Farmers continue to be left out of the conversation, says KAP president
Representatives from the Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) are calling on the Government of Canada to consider what farmers already do to help mitigate climate change when making changes to the carbon tax.
“Agriculture is one of the unique industries that has the ability to take carbon dioxide from the air, turn it into carbon in the soils, either short term in the products or long term in soil, and release oxygen. Those things have not been recognized by the federal government,” said Bill Campbell, president of KAP.
Recently, the federal government announced the carbon tax in provinces without their own emission reduction plan will continue to rise after 2022. It would hit $170 per tonne by 2030 under the new climate change plan.
The plan fails to consider how farmers are already contributing to reducing carbon with their farming practices and this hurts farmers when it comes to the carbon tax, said Campbell.
“The federal government has made this announcement with concrete financial implications with a carbon tax of $170 in 2030. Their suggestions of adaptation are based on philosophies and whimsical ideas and words, and those are not concrete plans that a producer can venture into and ensure that he will be around to maintain their farm and their farming practices,” Campbell told Farms.com.
KAP staff worked at taking steps in 2020 to have farmers more included in the federal consultations, and will continue to do so, but more needs to be done to support farmers, said Campbell.
“If we continue to have these type of government policies, be it the carbon tax or the clean fuel strategy, without proper consultation and awareness of what agriculture brings to the economy, we have great concerns about how we will adapt and how we will change and how Canada will thrive in the new world,” he said.