Open Letter: For the love the planet #LetsTalkBudget2024

Open Letter: For the love the planet #LetsTalkBudget2024

This letter is in response to the 2024 Federal Budget Consulations

Dear Finance Minister,

We are writing this letter as climate-concerned citizens in Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada,  an organization that has been building political will for a livable world since 2010. We wish you an early Happy Valentine’s day. 

We appreciate the opportunity to participate in the pre-budget consultations and all the citizen engagement that the government has conducted since 2015 in preparation for the many climate laws enacted in Canada, especially the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act [1]. Canada is the first country in the world to send the revenue from the price on GHG pollution back to citizens directly via cheques.

 We are also pleased to see that Canada is the first G20 country to introduce legislation to phase out fossil fuel subsidies [2], and that Canada is the  first major oil-producing country to put a cap on emissions [3]. Additionally, we commend Canada for its agriculture and climate policies [4] and the numerous initiatives taken to address the climate crisis,  too numerous to list here.

We also appreciate the pledges Canada signed at COP 28 in Dubai, including but not limited to:

  1. The Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge [5]
  2. The Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems, and Climate Action [6]
  3. The Joint Statement on Nature, Land Use, and Ocean Day [7]
  4. The International Coalition to Phase Out Fossil Fuel Subsidies [8]
  5. The Declaration on Climate and Health [9]
  6. The Declaration on Climate Relief Recovery and Peace [10] 
  7. The Declaration on Gender Balance and Just Transitions [11]
  8. The Global Cooling Pledge [12]

In 2023, the climate crisis reared its fury, exemplified by the devastating Canadian wildfires. Currently, Western Canada is grappling with a drought impacting the oil and gas industry, agriculture and other water users. The closure of the Rideau Canal Skating rink in our nation’s capital due to an unusually warm winter also underscores Canada’s changing climate. With El Niño predictions, anticipation of a hot year ahead heightens, emphasizing the urgent need for climate action. We only need to look at the record heat and wildfires devastating Chile right now to know what our summer ahead might look like. 

It is imperative to our future to address the biggest contributor of our changing climate: fossil fuels which account for over 85 percent of greenhouse gasses.  We truly appreciate Canada’s price on pollution [1]. We know from almost 14 years of collective research and advocacy that the most economically efficient and fairest way to transition our economy off of fossil fuels is via a price on pollution with rebates in combination with complementary policies. Thus, we are pleased to know of the existence of  Canada’s Global Carbon Pricing Challenge launched at COP 26 in Glasgow [13]. 

Currently, Canada is experiencing an affordability crisis, and there is disinformation linking affordability to Canada’s price on pollution. All Canadians deserve to know the truth. The President of the Bank of Canada confirms that the carbon tax barely affects inflation: just 0.15 percentage points [14].

The main causes of the affordability crisis are post-pandemic disruptions, the Ukraine war, and corporate greed within grocery chains and fossil fuel industries. Notably, high fossil fuel prices are historically inseparable from inflation and economic crises. Mark Zandi, the chief economist at the credit rating agency Moody’s, stated in an article for Vox that “every recession since World War II has been preceded by a jump in oil prices” [15]. 

We know that action on the climate crisis will enhance the affordability of our lives. The climate crisis has already inflicted a staggering cost of $16 million per hour in extreme weather damages over the past two decades [16], and without decisive action now, it will get much more costly. Carbon pricing, coupled with rebates as implemented in Canada, further improves the affordability of climate action [17]. Thus, we urge you to keep raising the fossil fuel pollution price because it cuts dangerous greenhouse gas pollution while raising our rebates at the same time. 

To fund adaptation, skills training, and the low carbon sector of our economy such as arts and culture, the care economy, as well as our United Nations commitments for loss and damage, households need not be burdened. To achieve this, tax reform is essential. In Canada, “Taxes and the Path to a Green Economy” from the Canadians for Tax Fairness is an excellent resource [18]. Globally, the go-to resource is the Joint Task Force on International Taxation, of which Canada is not a part [19].

In the spirit of Saint Valentine, for the love of the planet, and future generations, we thank you for your attention to these critical matters. We look forward to continued collaboration and progress towards a sustainable and resilient future.


Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada:

Cathy Orlando, Greater Sudbury
Cathy Lacroix, Toronto
Mary Blake Rose, London, ON
Virginia Wilkens, Victoria BC
Keith McNeill, Clearwater, BC
Alexandra Neufeldt, Ottawa, ON
Kaitlyn McDonald, Huntsville, ON
Glady Farquharson, Oshawa ON
Maggie Fu, Richmond Hill, ON
Jeffrey Levitt, Toronto ON
Caterina Lindman, New Hamburg, ON
Lynn Ovenden, Nation Municipality, ON
Andy Kubrin, Calgary AB
Laura Lindberg, Toronto ON
Mico Perreault, Montreal QC
Ruth Allen, Toronto ON
Ron Moore, Hillsburgh ON
Gord Cumming Georgetown ON
Virginia Cail, Winnipeg MB
Jeff Hammerskark, Chilliwack BC
Kent Heinrich, Stony Mountain MB
Roberta Tevlin, Toronto ON
Riley Bestvater, Winnipeg MB
Julia Van Ryswyk, Guelph, ON
Esther Redekopp, Winnipeg MB
Roland Montpellier, Ottawa, ON
Dr. Gary Bota, Greater Sudbury ON
Dr. Jane Cox, Greater Sudbury ON
Dr. Elaine Blacklock, Greater Sudbury
Dr. Jane Pritchard, Toronto ON
Dr. Douglas Pritchard, Toronto ON
Victor Dorian, Edmonton, AB
Dawson Vezey, Lorette MB
Sue Braiden, Erin On
Miles Ransaw, New Westminster BC
Lori Bohn, Winnipeg MB
Katie Landry, Toronto ON
Mark Taylor, Calgary AB
Gerry Labelle, Stephenville NL
Erik Hansen – Unity, SK


[1] Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. Retrieved from: 

[2] Government of Canada Delivers on Key Climate Commitment to Phase Out Inefficient Fossil Fuel Subsidies. 

[3] Minister Guilbeault Delivers Canada’s National Statement at COP28.

[4] Canada Agriculture and Climate Change. 

[5] Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge. e

[6] Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems, and Climate Action. 

[7] Joint Statement on Nature, Land Use, and Ocean Day. 

[8] International Coalition to Phase Out Fossil Fuel Subsidies. 

[9] Declaration on Climate and Health. 

[10] Declaration on Climate Relief Recovery and Peace. 

[11] Declaration on Gender Balance and Just Transitions. 

[12] Global Cooling Pledge. 

[13] Global Carbon Pricing Challenge. 

[14] Carbon Tax Barely Affects Inflation. 

[15] Fight Climate Change to End Fossil Fuel Inflation. 

[16] The Economic Cost of the Climate Crisis. 

[17] Carbon Pricing and Affordability.

[18] Tax Fairness – Taxes and Climate. 

[19] Focus2030 – COP28 Assessment of Commitments to Climate and Development Financing.