Washington State Governor Jay Inslee addressed the BC Legislature today. He offered an inspirational message of how Washington is positioning itself as a leader in the emerging 21st century economy, while at the same time taking steps to aggressively reduce greenhouse gas emissions. As leader of the third party, I was entitled to deliver a brief response.
Below I reproduce the text and video of my response. I also include the video of the Governor’s speech, followed by the videos of the responses by the Premier and the Leader of the Official Opposition.
A. Weaver: Thank you, Governor Inslee. We’re honoured to have you address the B.C. Legislature today.
My colleagues in the B.C. Green Party and I greatly appreciate your thoughtful words and, in particular, we greatly appreciate your continued climate leadership south of the border.
You know, we know how challenging and, frankly, at times frustrating it can be to work on this issue amongst those vested in the status quo, unable to recognize the economic opportunities that are presenting themselves. We commend your leadership and your perseverance on this file.
Our jurisdictions share a wealth of renewable natural resources that position us uniquely qualified to rise to the challenges climate change will bring. And we possess, as you note, the natural beauty that allows us to attract the best and brightest in the world, by offering them the greatest place in the world to live.
As governor, you’ve recognized this. By already working to attract and expand carbon fibre manufacturing at Moses Lake in rural Washington, by bringing this energy intensive manufacturing facility for BMW’s i-series electric vehicles close to the production of cheap renewable energy, Washington is capitalizing on the emerging 21st century economy. And what’s more, at the same time, you’re reducing transmission line energy loss.
Your government is illustrating that acting on climate change drives innovation, jobs and prosperity for all. With an economy that grew 2½ times the national rate last year, Washington was named the number one place in America to do business in 2017.
This was achieved while simultaneously demonstrating international leadership on the biggest challenge facing humanity.
I hope your demonstrated success reassures British Columbians, as we make bold choices of our own in the years ahead. Not only is it possible for governments to drastically reduce carbon emissions, but doing so spawns innovation, economic growth and job creation.
Finally, when reviewing your book, Apollo’s Fire: Igniting America’s Clean Energy Economy, I was reminded of president John F. Kennedy’s quote that I often use when talking about climate change.
In 1962, when President Kennedy announced that America would send a man to the moon by the end of the decade, he said this: “We must be bold.” He further said:
“We choose to go to the moon in this decade, not because it’s easy, but because it’s hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because the challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win.“
The time to be bold is upon us.
With that, I thank you for giving us so much to aspire to.