Farmers planning demonstrations to urge Senate to approve Bill C-234

Update, Nov. 20: A delegation of leaders from Ontario farm organizations say they are heading to Ottawa to show support for the passage of C-234. The group includes representatives from Beef Farmers of Ontario, Mushrooms Canada, Ontario Broiler Chicken Hatching Egg Producers Association, Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers’ Association, Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers, Ontario Pork, and Veal Farmers of Ontario.

Conservative shadow ag minister John Barlow will also be holding a press conference on Tuesday at noon eastern, coinciding with the planned rally on the Hill.

Farmers are planning to hold public rallies on Parliament Hill and other locations next week, calling on the Senate to pass Bill C-234.

While no farm or political groups are officially involved, multiple sources say individuals are organizing a rally to be held on Tuesday (November 21) on Parliament Hill.

The demonstration would coincide with senators returning for their first sitting since Nov. 9 when an amendment was proposed at the third and final reading stage of C-234, stalling passage of the bill that would remove the federal carbon tax from propane and natural gas used on farms for grain drying, barn heating, and other purposes.

The Trudeau government has deployed multiple unusual procedural tactics to obstruct the private member’s bill, which was introduced by Ontario Conservative MP Ben Lobb in February 2022 and approved by MPs in the House of Commons in March 2023.

The plans for Tuesday include having several dozen farmers in the Senate’s public gallery.

It’s expected the City of Ottawa will not allow tractors to be part of the protest — partially in response to the handling of the Freedom Convoy last year, as well as to remain consistent with rules for pro-Palestinian protests currently happening in Ottawa.

Regional rallies are also being planned for Monday and Tuesday at several Liberal MP riding offices across the country.

Unlike other farmer rallies in the past on Parliament Hill, farmers from Quebec do not have a major role in organizing the C-234 protest, as Quebec has its own provincial carbon pricing system. B.C. and the Northwest Territories also have their own carbon price regimes, while farmers in the rest of Canada pay the federal carbon levy on propane and natural gas used on farms.

Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre, along with Alberta Premier Danielle Smith, Saskatchewan’s Scott Moe, Ontario Premier Doug Ford, Nova Scotia’s Tim Houston, and New Brunswick’s Blaine Higgs, have also ratcheted up public calls and pressure over the past week on the Trudeau government to allow the passage of C-234.


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