The Conservatives tried to score environmental points against the Liberals Wednesday over how many planes the Grit tour uses, but the Liberals say they buy carbon offsets while the Tories don’t.
During a French-language TV debate in Montreal, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer criticized Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau for using two planes for his campaign.
The rare practice wasn’t known to journalists covering the Liberal tour. The Conservatives sent out a press release during the debate with travel logs and pictures of the second plane which is not decked out in the Liberal branding of Mr. Trudeau’s plane.
The revelation from the Tories brought a charge from Mr. Scheer that Mr. Trudeau is a “high-carbon hypocrite.”
Mr. Scheer suggested the Liberal Leader is a hypocrite because while Mr. Trudeau marched in the climate strike last week, he’s emitting more greenhouse gases by relying on two planes.
However, the Liberals say they have bought carbon offsets for the two planes as well as the buses they use on their tour. The Conservatives don’t purchase any offsets for their plane or buses.
”Andrew Scheer and his Conservatives did not purchase carbon offsets for their transportation because they think pollution should be free,” Mr. Trudeau told reporters after the debate.
He said the Liberals use two planes, just like they did in 2015 because it allows the party to do “more events, in more parts of the country and meet more Canadians.”
The party said it buys carbon offsets from Bullfrog Power Inc., which partners with Less Emissions. The company’s website says offsets are an “imperfect solution” and should be used as a “last resort” only.
The company lists solar energy and wastewater treatment projects as examples of their offset programs.
Mr. Scheer was asked why his campaign doesn’t buy carbon offsets but he didn’t answer and instead attacked the Liberals.
“I don’t understand why he needs two planes. We’ve got the one and we’ve got lots of space for luggage and equipment. I don’t know what types of props or costumes or camping equipment he’s bringing along with him but he’s made his choice,“ Mr. Scheer said.
“He thinks it’s okay to emit far more emissions than our campaign is emitting. And so we’re going to continue to hold him to account for his hypocrisy.”
Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.