Letter to the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Canada, on Carbon Pricing in Atlantic Canada
September 1, 2022
Dear Minister Guilbeault,
I am writing to you in my role as Chair of the Council of Atlantic Premiers which represents Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. Our four governments work closely to coordinate action on shared priorities for the region, including action on climate change.
As you are aware, we are all in discussions with you and your officials respecting the details of carbon pricing plans required under the federal carbon pricing benchmark. We are deeply concerned about the affordability impacts of carbon pricing on households in our region, especially as almost 40 per cent of Atlantic Canadians experience energy poverty- by far the highest rate in the country. The increase to the costs of energy under the carbon price will amplify the inflationary pressures currently being felt in Atlantic Canada and we believe that any discussion on carbon pricing should prioritize mitigating these impacts. We would like to request a meeting with you and your officials to identify practical solutions to this issue, especially as they relate to home heating fuels, before our provinces formally submit our plans.
As such, we are requesting a short-term extension for the provincial carbon pricing plan submissions. This would allow us to resolve any remaining issues, engage in meaningful conversations on solutions for heating fuels and to discuss options for the federal government to support energy affordability in the region.
We would appreciate your reply to our request by noon on September 2 and look forward to discussing these issues with you.
Honourable Tim Houston
Premier of Nova Scotia
Chair, Council of Atlantic Premiers