Report from the Legislature December 7, 2017

Dec 7, 2017

Our government recently released a climate strategy that reduces emissions in key sectors, introduces flexible options for emitters, and protects our province from a changing climate. Prairie Resilience: A Made-in-Saskatchewan Climate Change Strategy, accomplishes this without a carbon tax.

Our climate change strategy is about protecting our people and communities as much as it is about working with industry and others to lower emissions here in Saskatchewan. And we do plan to significantly reduce emissions in key sectors, but we will do so in a way that is economically sustainable and promotes economic growth.

The strategy proposes actions in key areas, including: natural systems; physical infrastructure; economic sustainability; community preparedness; and measuring, monitoring and reporting. Regulations will be developed through consultation beginning in 2018 and will recognize actions already taken by industry to reduce emissions.

Saskatchewan has a good story to tell when it comes to climate change. This includes agriculture, where our producers sequestered over 11 million tonnes of carbon in 2014. An offset system will create additional value for actions that result in carbon sequestration or reduced emissions, especially from agricultural soils, wetlands and forests.

The response to our plan from Federal Environment Minister McKenna appears to signal that Ottawa will not be imposing a carbon tax on Saskatchewan in January 2018. This is a welcome development as Saskatchewan people would not be paying more for home heating, gas, and other necessities.

The other advantage of our climate strategy is that our businesses and industry wouldn’t have to pay a federal carbon tax, which would make them less competitive here at home and abroad.

Unfortunately, after asking for a made-in-Saskatchewan climate change plan, the Saskatchewan NDP stood in the Legislature and voted against our made-in-Saskatchewan climate change plan.

It’s interesting to note that the NDP’s front-running leadership candidate is calling for “a made-in-Saskatchewan approach to carbon pricing”. That’s a carbon tax – just like the one the NDP imposed on Alberta and the one the Trudeau government tried to impose on Saskatchewan.

We have a better plan for Saskatchewan and you can read more about it online at

Our government has also unveiled a plan to provide rural communities with enhanced access to communications services. We are currently in the process of launching a four-phase initiative.

The conclusion of the Fall Sitting of the Legislature marked the end of an era in Saskatchewan as it was final sitting for Premier Brad Wall.

Premier Wall was elected on a vision for Saskatchewan that would secure a better quality of life for its residents. Saskatchewan has seen that vision unfold during a decade of growth in which we emerged as the second-fastest growing province in Canada with a population of 1.15 million.

During that time, our growing province produced the second-best job creation record in Canada – nearly double the national rate of job growth.

The growth of our province under the leadership of Premier Brad Wall has enabled us to provide record tax relief for low-income individuals and families.

It’s all about securing a better quality of life for all Saskatchewan people. Together, by this measure, we have had some success.

Thank you, Premier.