Ontario Announces Constitutional Challenge to Federal Government’s Carbon Tax Scheme

Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks Rod Phillips and Attorney General Caroline Mulroney has announced that the Government of Ontario will take immediate steps to challenge the constitutionality of the federal government’s carbon pricing at the Ontario Court of Appeal.

“During the election campaign we made a clear promise to the people of Ontario that we would use every tool at our disposal to fight the federal government’s plan to impose a carbon tax on Ontario families and businesses,” said Phillips. “We are keeping our promise.”

Ontario’s position in court will be that the federal Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act imposes an unconstitutional tax on Ontarians. The case will raise very significant constitutional issues, including whether the federal scheme is properly characterised as a tax and who has legislative  jurisdiction for it, and will likely end up before the Supreme Court of Canada.

The decision to commence a reference to the Ontario Court of Appeal is in addition to the decision announced by Premier Doug Ford last month to intervene in the Government of Saskatchewan’s reference also challenging the federal carbon tax.


Manning Environmental Law is a Canadian law firm based in Toronto, Ontario. Our practice is focussed on environmental law, energy law and aboriginal law. 

Paul Manning is a certified specialist in environmental law. He has been named as one of the World’s Leading Environmental Lawyers and one of the World’s Leading Climate Change Lawyers by Who’s Who Legal.

As always, these posts  are provided only as a general guide and are not legal advice. If you do have any issue that requires legal advice please get in touch. Our contact details can be found here



This entry was posted in carbon credits, Climate Change, Constitutional Law, emissions trading scheme, Environment, Environmental, federal environmental regulation, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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