In a 6-3 decision today, the Supreme Court of Canada released its ruling that the federal carbon price is constitutional. The decision provides clarity on the constitutionality of a specific regulatory mechanism – pricing of GHG emissions – and the federal government’s jurisdiction over establishing minimum national standards of GHG price stringency to reduce GHG emissions.
What is essential now is a cooperative approach for the provinces and Ottawa to work together to reduce GHG emissions while preserving the nature of Canadian federalism. Industry, investors and consumers require strong, consistent signals on how Canada and the provinces can work collaboratively on reducing GHG emissions.
“There is no winner and no loser in this decision. The issue remains the same: How does Canada move forward with a sensible and lasting public policy on how to reduce GHG emissions into the atmosphere. The SCC decision should be seen as a signal that the federal and provincial governments must work collaboratively on a solution that permits compromises. Failure to do so will result in further litigation and a lack of durable public policy and sends signals of uncertainty to capital markets.”
– Gary Mar, President and CEO, Canada West Foundation
“Today’s ruling enables Canadians to move forward with more clarity and certainty. Business, investors and consumers now know what lies ahead. However, the task of reducing GHG emissions is enormous and requires more than just the GGPA to get there. Cooperation among the provinces and with the federal government will be essential – but also a challenge if the solutions don’t recognize the unique circumstances in each province. There is rarely a one-size-fits-all solution for Canada.”
– Marla Orenstein, Director, Natural Resources Centre, Canada West Foundation