OTTAWA – Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault is adamant that the Conservatives are lying about the Liberals imposing a new green tax on pickup trucks and wants to assure the public that the Liberals have no interest in penalizing the owners of the giant, gas-guzzling vanity trucks currently choking Canada’s streets and air.
“There is no secret plan to tax pickup trucks in order to discourage people from buying these vehicles, some of which weigh three times as much as a sedan, and which are up to three times more likely to kill pedestrians who are unable to be seen over these trucks’ unnecessarily massive front grills,” Guilbeault explained. “We have no plans to dissuade private individuals from driving these carbon-spewing killing machines through the streets of Canadian cities, and resent the implication that we do.”
“Canadians need to know we have absolutely no interest in a pickup truck tax which we could use to mitigate the extreme environmental harm these trucks cause compared to smaller vehicles. We do not want to collect any money from the sale of pickup trucks to pay for the healthcare costs of the increase in asthma and other health issues caused by the avoidably huge amount of pollution these trucks emit while being primarily driven by urban and suburban dwellers who literally have no logical reason to be driving 3000 kg vehicles to and from work. We believe that money would be better spent on custom paint jobs, leather interiors, or tricked out truck nuts.”
The Conservative claim about the pickup tax stems from a recommendation from the Net Zero Advisory Body, one of forty non-binding recommendations which the government has no obligation to enact and which Guilbeault resolutely denies having any interest in.
“From giving the green light to the Bay du Nord oil megaproject to ensuring that the largest amount of money spent on climate action in the 2022 budget is a carbon capture subsidy to fossil fuel companies, the Liberal government has made our position on the environment very clear,” Guilbeault said. “Obviously, we’re against it.”
“This kind of politics is divisive and distracting from the important work we all have to do of making superficial nods to climate change while being fully committed to carrying on with business as usual.”
The Liberals are further responding to the Conservatives’ accusation of environmentalism by introducing new rebates for electric SUVs and trucks in order to encourage Canadians to continue to buy huge, energy- and resource-intensive private vehicles rather than use public transit or god-forbid, a bike.