6 C
Prince Albert
Thursday, May 23, 2024
Home News Premier unveils policy paper claiming federal environment policies with cost Saskatchewan $111 billion by 2035

Premier unveils policy paper claiming federal environment policies with cost Saskatchewan $111 billion by 2035

Premier unveils policy paper claiming federal environment policies with cost Saskatchewan $111 billion by 2035
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe (Herald file photo)

The provincial government says they will take steps to protect Saskatchewan families, businesses and jobs after Premier Scott Moe reveals “destructive” federal policies that could cost the province’s economy $111 billion by 2035 during a visit to a North Battleford Chamber of Commerce event on Oct. 11.

The Government of Saskatchewan released a paper on Tuesday entitled “Drawing the Line: Defending Saskatchewan’s Economic Autonomy”, which considers policy options “in light of the current federal government intrusions into Saskatchewan’s exclusive areas of jurisdiction under the Constitution,” according to a media release from the province.

“The situation has been exacerbated in recent years by the current federal government’s continued interference in the province’s jurisdiction over natural resources under the guise of federal environmental regulation,” Moe said. “It is time to defend and assert Saskatchewan’s economic autonomy by ‘drawing the line:’ taking a number of steps including the introduction of provincial legislation to clarify and protect Saskatchewan’s constitutional rights.”

Analysis by the Ministry of Finance indicates that nine different federal climate change policies are estimated to cost Saskatchewan’s economy $111 billion between 2023 and 2035.

“This cannot continue,” Moe said. “We have so much potential in Saskatchewan to grow and prosper.  A strong Saskatchewan means a strong Canada, but we cannot allow continued federal intrusion into our exclusive constitutional right to develop our natural resources and grow our economy.   We will defend and protect Saskatchewan jobs and our economic future.”

Saskatchewan NDP leader Carla Beck responded to Moe’s paper by claiming that Moe is not fighting for the jobs of Saskatchewan people but is instead “protecting his own”.

“Scott Moe is out of touch with what Saskatchewan people want and need,” Beck said. “Scott Moe is more interested in distraction, sowing division, and pointing fingers than actually delivering results.”

In a ruling earlier this year striking down one of those federal policies, The Impact Assessment Act, Alberta Chief Justice Catherine Fraser wrote “Through this legislative scheme, Parliament has taken a wrecking ball to the constitutional rights of the citizens of Alberta and Saskatchewan and other provinces to have their natural resources developed for the benefit.”

The policy paper outlines a number of steps the province could take to protect the residents of Saskatchewan, including:

            •           Provincial legislation to clarify and protect constitutional rights belonging to the province;

            •           Pursuing greater autonomy over immigration policy to ensure Saskatchewan has the people it needs;

            •           Better recognition for Saskatchewan industry contributions to sustainable growth;

            •           Preparation to take legal actions, legislative or otherwise, to maintain control of electricity, fertilizer emission/use targets and oil and gas emissions/production; and

            •           Exploration of greater autonomy in tax collection.

Moe said the government will further elaborate and outline next steps in the Speech from the Throne on October 26.