Media Statement July 21st 2015
As LNG bill passes, British Columbia is at odds with the global community on climate change
For Immediate Release
Victoria B.C. – British Columbia is at odds with the global community, who are calling for governments to take immediate action on addressing and mitigating climate change according to Andrew Weaver, MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head and Deputy Leader of the B.C. Green Party. This statement comes a week after calling for an emergency debate on whether B.C. legislators are acting with sufficient urgency or demonstrating the leadership needed to mitigate and prepare for climate change.
Yesterday, twenty four of the UK’s foremost academic and professional institutions – including the British Academy, the Royal Society, and the Learned Society of Wales – released a statement that said “responding to the challenge [of climate change] will require deploying the full breadth of human talent and invention. Creative policy interventions and novel technological solutions need to be fostered and applied… Capturing this potential quickly and effectively will drive economic progress.”
“Today the B.C. Liberals are forcing through legislation that they desperately hope will land a single LNG investment,” said Weaver. “At a time when it is imperative that we are making meaningful investments in low-carbon technologies, the B.C. Liberals are pulling out the stops to build fossil fuel infrastructure that will commit the province to an energy-intensive non-renewable industry for the foreseeable future.”
In reference to the regional droughts, forest fires, lack of snowpack, and fishery closures currently affecting B.C., Andrew Weaver last week urged the House suspend discussion of LNG legislation to discuss the government’s inaction on climate change. Responding to MLA Weaver’s statement, Finance Minister Michael de Jong said, “…we have certainly experienced some extreme conditions in the province these past number of weeks that have contributed to some challenging circumstances. We heard about that earlier from the minister. Nor do I doubt the member’s interest and commitment to addressing some of the underlying issues that may or may not be contributing to that. Having said that, we are also bound and obliged to conduct proceedings in this chamber pursuant to the standing orders.”
Both the BC NDP and the BC Liberals argued against having an emergency one hour debate on climate change.
“The juxtaposition of the B.C. government being called into a summer session to push LNG legislation through, unwilling to spend an hour discussing our response to climate change while salmon are dying in warm rivers before they can spawn, Gulf Islands are starting to truck in fresh water, and the Premier’s own riding is on fire is incredibly striking, and only further highlights the inaction we are seeing” said Weaver.
“British Columbia has all the tools it needs to tackle climate change head on; we have the renewable resources required, and the innovative, creative, and inspired population,” said Andrew Weaver. “The missing element is a government willing to demonstrate the leadership required to focus the efforts. Right now they seem content to continue rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.”
Press Secretary – Andrew Weaver MLA
Cell: 250 216 3382
Victoria BC V8V 1X4