Federal Environment Minister John Baird was in Halifax on Thursday where he told The Chronicle Herald's editorial board that the federal Liberals' Green Shift would be disastrous for Nova Scotia.
www.thechronicleherald.ca/Nov...a/1073065.html (external - login to view)
Federal Environment Minister John Baird doesnít mince words when predicting the impact of the Liberalsí Green Shift plan on Nova Scotians.
"The people of Nova Scotia get screwed," Mr. Baird told The Chronicle Heraldís editorial board Wednesday.
"Out of all 10 provinces, the worst effect will be on people that are middle class in Nova Scotia."
Prime Minister Stephen Harper has already said that the Liberal plan would "screw everybody across the country." The Grit proposal would put a tax on carbon emissions but also provide tax cuts and rebates.
Mr. Baird said the Liberal plan would be a particular burden here because of the reliance on coal-fired electricity and heating oil. He also said the price of goods would increase because the cost of diesel would go up.
But Liberal MP Scott Brison said Mr. Baird and the Conservatives arenít being honest about how their plan would increase the cost of energy and donít seem willing to have an honest debate about the plans.
"Canadians want an honest and respectful debate," Mr. Brison said in a telephone interview. "Minister Baird, in parroting the vulgar language of Stephen Harper, is not contributing to that debate."
2nd, "Vulgar Language?" What vulgar language? Nova Scotia get's "Screwed?" That's not vulgar, that's the truth, that's what we're used to... that's the language we hear everyday, and just because it's against his little screw-job of a plan, doesn't make it vulgar.
I have yet to hear the Liberals responses to the big arsed holes in their plan that have been brought to attention..... they got nothing.
The Kings-Hants MP challenged Mr. Baird to have a debate on the Green Shift.
Mr. Brison said the Liberals have been upfront about the cost of their plan.
He also said that unlike the Conservatives, the Liberals would give Canadians, particularly those with middle or low incomes, a benefit through tax cuts.
Mr. Baird said itís "not credible" to think the Liberal tax cuts would offset the carbon tax costs to Nova Scotians. The Conservatives plan to put regulations in place to decrease greenhouse gas emissions, cutting them by 20 per cent by 2020.
But environmentalists have criticized the plan for including intensity-based targets, which tie emissions to units of production and could allow overall emissions to grow.
The Conservative document Turning the Corner says there would be higher prices for Canadians.
"Canadians can therefore expect to bear costs under the regulatory framework that are not trivial," it says.
"At the same time, these costs strike an appropriate balance between environmental results and manageable economic impacts."
Mr. Baird said energy prices are on the rise anyway and the federal government must act to quickly stem emissions.
"Our plan focuses first on the big polluters," he said.
The Conservatives think attacking the Liberalsí Green Shift could lead to political gains in Nova Scotia and the other Atlantic provinces.
Well the Liberals are losing their places here in the Atlantic as it is.... and sorry to say, but they're doing it to themselves.
A senior government official said thereís a "scent of blood in the water."
Mr. Harper is scheduled to make a speech in Fredericton today laying out what the Conservatives have to offer as opposed to the Liberals.