VICTORIA, B.C. – The leaders of the British Columbia Greens, the Ontario Greens, the PEI Greens, and the Latest Brunswick Greens are renewing a call for a windfall profits tax on oil and gas firms that will be redistributed on to Canadians.
“Canadians are battling record-breaking affordability challenges straight away, while oil and gas firms are reaping record-breaking profits,” said Sonia Furstenau, leader of the BC Greens and MLA for Cowichan Valley. “That’s the reason we’re calling on the Prime Minister to implement a one-time windfall profits tax on oil and gas firms, with the proceeds returned to Canadians.”
Last month the leaders of the BC Greens, the PEI Greens, and the Latest Brunswick Greens signed an open letter to the Prime Minister calling for urgent motion. Ahead of the First Ministers’ meeting in Victoria they, together with the Ontario Green leader, are renewing that decision.
“On Monday, Canada’s premiers and Prime Minister can be meeting to debate national challenges, and we hope the intersecting affordability and climate crises can be on the agenda,” said Mike Schreiner, leader of the Ontario Greens and MPP for Guelph. “Collaboration and political will are needed in any respect levels of presidency with a purpose to provide real solutions to Canadians.”
“The federal government has the facility and opportunity to offer Canadians the financial relief they so desperately need straight away,” said Peter Bevan-Baker, leader of the PEI Greens and Leader of the Official Opposition. “Corporations and their stakeholders shouldn’t profit wildly while on a regular basis Canadians are struggling to afford groceries and pay their bills.”
This 12 months Canadian oil firms have reported surging profit margins. Cenovus announced its best first-quarter profits ever, at $1.6 billion. Imperial Oil reported $1.17 billion (a 30-year record for the corporate), Canadian Natural Resources reported $3.1 billion, and Suncor reported $2.95 billion.
“The UK and plenty of other countries in Europe have already established a windfall profit tax on oil and gas firms,” said David Coon, leader of the Latest Brunswick Greens and MLA for Fredericton South. “One concrete thing Prime Minister Trudeau can do to handle the affordability crisis is put in place a windfall profits tax and return those funds to people.”
Here is the backgrounder and the letter to the Prime Minister.