Scrapping cap-and-trade will give Ontarians some relief at the pumps: gas price watchdog

Londoners hoping Premier Doug Ford’s promise to cut gas prices will actually happen are in luck.

Gas price watchdog Dan McTeague says he thinks Ontarians will see some relief at the pumps this summer after Ford announced Tuesday he has revoked the regulation that kept the province’s cap-and-trade system in place.

Ford promised to cut gas prices by 10 cents a litre during the provincial election.

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“It won’t be done overnight. I think he’s already signaled that half of that will be in the way of a cut in removing the 4.6 cents a litre that you’re paying. When they average it out to gas stations, it works out to almost 5 cents a litre in terms of the cap-and-trade carbon tax,” McTeague of said.

The other half of the decrease will be done as a result of a reduction to the provincial fuel tax, which requires passing a new budget, he said.

But there are concerns oil companies may try to keep prices high.

“I think many people are worried that if there is a decrease coming from the provincial side that oil companies will simply pocket it,” McTeague said.

“If that is the case I would probably be the first , as I give two-day advance notices in terms of wholesale price increases or decrease.

“I’ll see it happening and I will very quickly call it offside,” said McTeague.

He adds commuters will notice the difference.

“Not only do I think it’s going to happen because it’s likely one of the most important announcements Ford made in the campaign, but the drop is scalable and viewable.”

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Londoners are paying $1.379 for regular Wednesday morning. That’s over 30 cents more expensive than last year.

Gas is more than 15 cents a litre cheaper in St. Thomas and more than 20 cents cheaper in Strathroy.

The newly sworn-in premier says his PC government will now begin winding down all the green programs that had been funded through the system.

— With files from Devon Peacock

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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