Environment Low on Agendas of Lib Leader Candidates


From TheTyee.ca – Jan 21, 2011

by Andrew MacLeod

Environmental issues were prominent in the 2009
election, with Premier Gordon Campbell’s carbon tax giving him claim to
the green high ground over the Carole James-led NDP which campaigned to
axe a tax many environmentalists supported.

While there are varying opinions on whether
those positions made a difference to either side’s results, less than
two years later none of the candidates to replace Campbell appear ready
to pick up the green agenda.

Indeed, there have been few mentions of
environmental issues in the Liberal race. Former cabinet minister and
recent talk radio host Christy Clark has mentioned the green technology sector and jobs. Others have staked out where they stand on the carbon tax, with Kevin Falcon pledging to freeze it after 2012 and George Abbott saying he would hold a referendum on whether or not to freeze it.

But nobody in the running to be the next premier has really claimed the issue.

As Nathan Cullen, a federal NDP member of
parliament who considered entering the race to replace James heading the
BC NDP sees it, “The Liberals are running scared away from Campbell’s
climate change work, some of which needs to be enhanced and continued.”

And environmentalists — some of whom are
encouraging people to join the parties and try to sway the campaigns —
are wondering whether there will be anyone to support in the Liberal

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About Damien Gillis

Damien Gillis is a Vancouver-based documentary filmmaker with a focus on environmental and social justice issues - especially relating to water, energy, and saving Canada's wild salmon - working with many environmental organizations in BC and around the world. He is the co-founder, along with Rafe Mair, of The Common Sense Canadian, and a board member of both the BC Environmental Network and the Haig-Brown Institute.