Carbon pricing to cost Canadian truckers $538 million in 2021, CTA says

by Today's Trucking

Canada’s largest trucking association continues to push against carbon pricing, citing a lack of “meaningful environmental changes” that result.

In letters to multiple ministers, the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) has stressed that fleets already closely monitor fuel consumption – and that carbon pricing offers no added incentive to adopt new technologies or business strategies.

Diesel fuel tank
(Photo: istock)

The alliance estimates Canada’s trucking industry will pay $538 million in carbon pricing this year, rising to $1.2 billion by 2023, and $3 billion by 2030.

The federal carbon price on diesel is set to increase $0.1073 per liter on April 1. Carbon pricing is set to be worth $15 per tonne by 2030.

Carbon pricing revenue that is generated by trucking should create a Green Truck Fund to encourage more investments in GHG-reducing equipment, the alliance says. A pre-budget submission from the group asked for rebates of up to 50% on GHG-reducing technologies on tractors, trailers and other options.

There have been internal discussions around developing a national scrappage program to provide incentives to replace older trucks, but CTA is opposing that because it would have no benefit to longhaul operations.

Proposed fuel standards

“The longhaul trucking industry does not currently have an alternative to diesel fuel, which only further reinforces that diesel will continue to be the fuel of necessity – not by choice – for our industry for the foreseeable future,” it adds.

In comments to Environment and Climate Change Canada, CTA has asked for a closer look at any proposed changes to the carbon intensity of diesel fuel – including the addition of any additives or biofuel mandates. 

“Increases in biodiesel content continue to be an ongoing concern. If mandated, such a policy would expose the trucking industry sector to significant mechanical issues, leading to enormous maintenance and operating cost increases,” it says.

“A biodiesel mandate – even at a 5% level – does not guarantee a consistent blend at the pumps year-round, leading to higher blends in warmer months, and to significant operational issues for fleets and truck drivers operating this equipment.”

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  • No company should get more than $20,000 in assisting with buying heaters better batteries or electric air-conditioning and limited to a maximum of 30 percent of the cost to try and see what works on a limited basis that also make better driver conditions. A better use of the gov money would be to build another 10,000 parking spots across Canada over a period of 5 years and install 1,500 plugs of 20 amps on 110 and 500 reefer plugs per year.

  • New emission systems have cost equipment purchases to skyrocket since 2004. The average cost on these less than reliable, high down time, and repair cost to owner operators and fleets average at least $27000 per unit for compliance equipment. There has been no incentives or recognition of such, passed on for GHG emission added to the cost of the eqiupment. Who compensates us for being forced into purchasing this equipment, and have further carbon pricing added annually to the cost of trucking. Where is our Carbon Credits ? No wonder we have a decline in people interested in a trucking career, furthermore the quality of drivers out there to fill the vacant seats. Just add more idiot proofing when building equipment, hiking the cost to purchase trucks, and maintenance further. Someone needs to address this in a meaningful and fair manner. I thought we were an essential service, seems like we are a dumping ground, with a blind eye to failed Government Policies at the expense of hard working truckers.

  • Without an economically priced alternative, they have us over a barrel. And the proposed refunds to consumers don’t even cover the extra cost, never mind the increased price buried in everything else passed on to keep everybody’s head above water.

  • This is very true. Majority of us are running the latest emission standards. So we are doing the best we can with the current technology. Why penalize us when we are supplying the goods for our country? If your going to keep charging it then make big rebates when you buy new equipment. Carbon tax is a joke. We’d do more for the environment penalizing China for not using environmentally friendly manufacturing.