If there’s a lesson in Justin Trudeau’s rapidly crumbling plan for a carbon tax, it’s that when you have an opportunity in politics, you should act quickly.
When the Liberals were elected, there were very few opponents to carbon pricing running provincial governments across the country, and the federal government was also confident that it could push through the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion. Now, the government of Saskatchewan is planning to challenge the tax in court and the opposition leaders in two of Canada’s largest provinces are threatening to fight any carbon pricing if they form government.
Even before he contests his first Alberta election, Jason Kenney is already positioning himself as the leader of Canada’s conservative movement and the champion of the province’s energy sector. And Doug Ford is clearly striving to become a thorn in Trudeau’s side on many issues if he becomes Ontario premier in less than a month.
Meanwhile, the government of British Columbia is battling the government over the pipeline. Suddenly the landscape for Trudeau’s energy policy looks a lot more complicated than it did a year ago.