On climate change, Premier Wall favours Clinton’s plan

  • 13 Oct 2016
  • The StarPhoenix
  • WILL CHABUN 

On climate change, Premier Wall favours Clinton’s plan

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has gone to a surprising source in his campaign against the federal Liberal government’s proposal to impose a carbon price on Canada’s provinces.

“When I take a look at Hillary Clinton’s climate change plan, I wish Justin Trudeau’s was a little more like Hillary Clinton’s,” Wall told reporters Wednesday morning.

A position paper on combating climate change from the website of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was the topic of a media scrum by the premier, who noted that Clinton’s document says not a word about a carbon price and makes a positive reference to carbon capture and storage (CCS).

Installed at Sask Power’s Boundary Dam 3 power generation plant near Estevan, CCS is the technology that Wall has been citing as evidence of Saskatchewan’s commitment to addressing climate change.

The premier also indicated he’ll outline his alternative to Trudeau’s plan in a speech to a Regina & District Chamber of Commerce luncheon next week.

His point about the absence of carbon pricing or a carbon tax in the plans of Clinton is that her victory could put “carbon-intense” Saskatchewan firms in mining, energy, manufacturing and farming at a commercial disadvantage to their American counterparts, who wouldn’t have to pay such a charge or tax.

“Shouldn’t we be aware, at least, of what the Americans are going to do — our largest trading partners, we’re part of the North American integrated market? We need to know if anything we’re going to do unilaterally in Canada will make us less or more competitive.”

Ironically, Wall was anything but keen on Clinton only a few years ago when she said she was unalterably opposed to the Keystone XL pipeline.

Dwight Newman, a law professor at the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Law, said the law in such matters “hasn’t been fully enough developed” to give conclusive answers.

Generally speaking, it’s widely agreed that Ottawa has sufficient jurisdiction to apply a tax. But there are limits on this, as shown by a Supreme Court decision in the 1980s striking down federal laws on natural gas exports as interfering with provincial ownership of resources, Newman said.

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About prosperitysaskatchewan

Consultant on Saskatchewan's natural resources.

Posted on October 13, 2016, in economic impact, miscellaneous. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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