In September 2020, the Supreme Court of Canada heard appeals from three provincial references concerning the constitutionality of the federal Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. The Act imposes a “carbon tax” on fuels and industrial activities in “listed provinces” the federal Governor in Council has decided have not placed sufficiently stringent prices on greenhouse gas emissions. Saskatchewan, Ontario and Alberta brought references to their Courts of Appeal seeking an opinion on the validity of the Act. The majorities in Saskatchewan and Ontario affirmed the validity of the Act under the national concern branch of the federal peace, order and good government (“POGG”) power. In the opinion of the majority in Alberta, most of the Act was ultra vires Parliament.
"Saving the Planet Doesn’t Mean You Can’t Save the Federation: Greenhouse Gases Are Not a Matter of National Concern."
The Supreme Court Law Review: Osgoode’s Annual Constitutional Cases Conference
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