Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s accusation Ontario Premier Doug Ford is “moving the goalposts … (a) step backwards” on the province’s industrial greenhouse gas emission targets is laughable, given the Liberals’ sorry history on this issue.
To say nothing of hypocritical.
First, a brief explanation of why this controversy about “goalposts” erupted at Friday’s first ministers’ meeting.
Ford accused Trudeau and Environment Minister Catherine McKenna of “moving the goalposts” on Ontario because they rejected his plan to reduce the province’s emissions to 30% below 2005 levels by 2030, which is Trudeau’s national standard for all of Canada.
They responded Ford moved the goalposts because he scrapped former Ontario Liberal premier Kathleen Wynne’s cap-and-trade scheme, intended to lower provincial emissions to 37% below 1990 levels by 2030, a deeper cut.
Trudeau was relying on Ontario’s plan under his Liberal ally, Wynne, to meet his national standard of a 30% cut below 2005 emissions by 2030, because other provinces whose climate change plans he accepted will not achieve that target.
Ford argued Trudeau and McKenna are undermining Ontario’s economy by demanding it achieve deeper cuts than other provinces, despite his pledge to meet Trudeau’s national standard without a carbon tax.
Trudeau and McKenna countered Ford was playing games with the numbers.
That criticism is especially hypocritical given that federal Liberal governments have been moving their goalposts backward and playing games with their emission targets for a quarter century.