Amendment to Bill C-234 to “increase the cost of Canadian food production”
October 23, 2023 By Greenhouse Canada
Oct. 23, 2023 – An amendment to Bill C-234, put forward by Senator Dalphond, removes the heating and cooling of agricultural buildings, including greenhouses, from the full carbon pricing exemptions initially encompassed by the bill.
According to the Fruit and Vegetable Growers of Canada (FVGC), this alteration “comes at a critical juncture as Canadians are grappling with inflationary pressures, leading to higher grocery costs. Moreover, it places Canada at a competitive disadvantage globally, especially when compared to our major trading partners.”
A recent RBC report revealed that the U.S. and the EU allocate 1.7 per cent and 1.8 per cent of farm gate receipts, respectively, for climate funding, compared to Canada’s mere 0.5 per cent.
“The original version of Bill C-234, passed with all party-support by the House of Commons, promised tangible relief to a sector already navigating numerous challenges—from stabilizing grocery prices to contending with carbon tax pressures. Its alteration by the Senate not only diminishes this relief but also increases the cost of Canadian food production,” states Jan VanderHout, President of FVGC, in a press release.
“While we appreciate the existing 80 per cent exemption under the federal Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act (GGPPA), it’s clearly no longer enough when an Ontario family farm growing 30 acres of greenhouse peppers faces nearly $150,000 in annual carbon tax costs at today’s rate of $65 per tonne,” said Linda Delli Santi, Chair of the Greenhouse Vegetable Working Group, in a press release. “Carbon and heat are essential for greenhouse crops. This Senate amendment strips away our industry’s ability to make innovative investments in sustainable agriculture and produce food that the world so desperately needs.”
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