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Scheer Promises to Hit Paris Target with No Carbon Tax, Offers No Details

Federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer promised over the weekend to unveil a plan to meet Canada’s commitments under the Paris agreement without a carbon tax. But he doesn’t have any details to back up the promise.

“We are about a year away from the next election, a little bit more. I guarantee you we will have a comprehensive message to Canadians,” Scheer told CTV’s Question Period.

“I will unveil a plan that reaches the targets that we have already voted in favour of,” he added. “The Liberals would love to have people believe that the choice is a carbon tax or nothing. I reject that.”

That promise didn’t sit well with Toronto Sun columnist Lorrie Goldstein, who accused both Scheer and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of misleading Canadians by claiming they can meet the country’s international climate commitments.

Conservative and Liberal governments have been setting and failing to meet greenhouse gas emission targets going back to the Tory era of Brian Mulroney, the Liberal governments of Jean Chretien and Paul Martin, the Conservative government of Stephen Harper, and now, the Trudeau government,” he writes. “It is not helpful for Scheer to join their ranks.”

Inside and outside the House of Commons, “the Conservatives under Scheer have stated their strong opposition to the Liberal government’s plan to impose a federal price on carbon—up to C$50 per excess tonne by 2022—in provinces who don’t implement their own,” CTV notes. But Scheer and his caucus did vote in favour of implementing the Paris agreement in June 2016, “stating it was in the best interest of Canadians and recognizing that climate change is a global issue.

Four months later, the Conservatives voted against ratifying the landmark global deal.