Alberta’s government will not accept any federal plan on emissions that will hit Canadians’ pocketbooks any further, especially at a time when it’s costing over $2 per litre to fill up and seniors are struggling to heat their homes and pay their bills.
To be clear, there are only two ways to reduce emissions – either invest in technology or reduce economic activity.
Alberta will not accept a plan that explicitly plans to reduce economic activity, which is exactly what is projected by the Liberal-NDP coalition’s own numbers in the Emissions Reduction Plan released on March 29th.
The reduction in oil and gas production spelled out in their insane climate plan would only send production and the resulting economic activity to those in the world with the worst environmental records.
My message to Minister Guilbeault is clear: Alberta will not accept an emissions plan that would destroy Alberta’s economy and make life more unaffordable for Albertans.
The world needs more oil and gas and Alberta’s government is not interested in a transition from jobs in the energy sector laid out in the plan.
Alberta’s government will not accept a plan that treads on the natural resource guarantees that former premier Peter Lougheed fought hard to gain for the benefit of all Albertans.
Albertans rightfully want to reap the benefits of the economic activity produced from oil and gas, and Alberta’s government is able to provide the services and new infrastructure that result from revenues and royalties.
But if production is cut by the federal government, royalties are cut. If jobs are lost, personal income tax is lost. If companies move out, corporate income tax is lost. Albertans saw $87 billion of investments leave the province under Rachel Notley’s NDP; it is much harder to gain that investment back.
On lost royalties alone, if a production cut results in a 10 per cent drop, about a $1.3 billion loss, that means Alberta would be without the money for the Calgary Cancer Centre, or for the new childcare agreement that cut the cost of childcare for Albertans in half.
Of course, the Liberal-NDP coalition loves to mention services that Quebec is able to provide its residents, but conveniently fail to acknowledge the now $13.6 billion that Quebec receives in equalization every year – a program that a strong majority of Albertans voted against in a referendum last fall.
Alberta’s government would be happy to contribute to Confederation if the federal government was as passionate about protecting the quality of life Albertans have worked hard to build for our families. Instead, they will destroy it.
And there has been relief from Premier Jason Kenney with the elimination of provincial fuel taxes and a $150 rebate for the high electricity bills Albertans experienced this past winter.
But make no mistake: the Liberal-NDP Coalition’s insane emissions plan will jack up electricity rates even higher and make life unaffordable for all Canadians, not just Albertans.
That’s why Alberta’s government is going to fight tooth-and-nail to keep our economy intact and defend the resources that Premier Lougheed guaranteed remained for the province’s benefit for all Albertans.
-Hon. Jason Nixon