Letter: Northern Ontario cannot be left out in the cold

A list of reasons the Liberal carbon tax contributes to Northern economic decline

To the Expositor:

The good people of Northern Ontario, we are at a turning point in our history and this next election will decide whether we will finally come out of our decline or if our young will be forced to continue to look for work elsewhere.

Over the last year, the Liberals have dealt a serious blow to Northerners by creating a carbon tax. This tax will hit us harder here than those people who live in major, urban centres. It is not like we have a choice whether to catch a bus or other forms of public transportation to get to work, medical appointments or even to get our weekly groceries. In the North, for most instances, we must drive.

Generally, our winters are colder here in the North, which requires us to use more energy from carbon-producing sources to heat our homes. But these facts do not phase our prime minister who hasn’t had to struggle to pay a heating bill in his entire life. As our prime minister uses thousands of litres of fuel to fly to BC to march in a parade or go surfing, our seniors will be facing the real choice whether to eat this winter or heat their homes.

Additionally, since Mr. Trudeau came into office he has abandoned our Northern resource sectors. In the North, we have faced the real consequences for Mr. Trudeau’s failed diplomacy and trade negotiations. We are the ones who have suffered most from the tariffs on our softwood lumber and steel. Mr. Trudeau’s trade failures have cost us jobs and have damaged the survival of Northern industries and the towns who rely on these mills to fuel their economies. Unfortunately, the Trudeau-led government doesn’t appear to have any real urgency or plan to solve these tariff issues any time soon, leaving the North to dwindle in the wind.

Now that the election is nearing, we are finding out that the Liberals and the NDP are using catchphrases like climate crisis or climate emergency to stop pipelines and punish industries that rely on fossil fuels to operate. It is interesting to find out many of these industries can be found right across the North. They include mining, sawmills and smelters. What do the Liberal’s and the NDP’s climate plans mean for these industries? Wage cuts? Layoffs? Or more closures?

Meanwhile, our government is actively engaging with the world’s worst carbon polluters to create freer trade pacts, so these countries can sell their products here without the fear of tariffs. The last things these foreign countries are worried about is the environmental cost that their products have on the environment. This scenario that has been created by our government has left many of our manufacturers unable to compete, so they leave and set up shop in these third world countries. This only helps to worsen the environmental problem and will drive down wages worldwide.

Andrew Scheer and the Conservative Party of Canada have chosen to go a different direction, they want to help Canadians and strengthen Canada’s economy. Andrew Scheer has not only promised to get rid of the carbon tax, but he has also promised to get rid of all federal taxes on heating bills. This will help to take some of the economic burden off of the most vulnerable in our region and make life more affordable for our pensioners. In addition, Andrew Scheer has promised to make the big polluters pay for their high carbon emissions instead of taxing the average Canadian family.

The Conservatives want to build pipelines, so Canadians can be independent in their energy needs, instead of shipping billions of litres of oil from countries thousands of kilometres away. This will help to lower global emissions and help Canada to keep its manufacturing jobs here. This Conservative plan will strengthen Northern Ontario and rural Canada economies for future generations.

However, the choice is yours come election day, do you vote for the left whose planned economic policies will create jobs in other countries or do you vote Conservatives who want to create jobs here in Canada and strengthen Canadian families?

Myles Clayton