A farm tractor and baler sit in a hay field on a misty morning near Cremona, Alta., Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016. Canadian farmers are looking to more sustainable farming techniques like capturing carbon in the soil as the warnings grow louder that our food supplies are at risk from climate change and land degradation. Elections Canada says whether discussing the veracity of climate change becomes a partisan issue for third parties during the election will be decided on a case-by-case basis and only if it receives complaints. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Elections Canada to assess ‘partisan’ climate change rhetoric case by case

People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier has said climate change is not an emergency nor caused by human

Elections Canada says it will decide on a case-by-case basis whether discussing the legitimacy of climate change becomes a partisan issue for third parties during the federal campaign, and only if it receives complaints.

Environment groups say they feel muzzled from speaking out about the urgency of climate change after the federal elections agency warned earlier this summer that doing so could be considered partisan.

The Canada Elections Act could consider advertising partisan if it opposes or supports a policy positions of any party or candidate, even without naming them.

If the advertising exceeds $500, third parties would have to register with Elections Canada, raising fears among some environmental charities that the Canada Revenue Agency could also decide they are partisan and put their tax status in jeopardy.

In the case of climate change, People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier has taken a position that climate change is not an emergency nor caused by humans, which could potentially makes any argument saying differently a partisan statement under the law.

Clean Energy Canada has already restricted some of its responses to party positions to avoid running afoul of the law, while Greenpeace Canada is planning to cease all advertising on climate change during the writ period.

An Elections Canada spokeswoman says the rules around advertising for third parties are not new, but concedes the concerns about climate change may be coming up only now because the environment is poised to play a bigger role in the campaign, which is expected to get underway early next month.

READ MORE: Environment groups warned saying climate change is real could be seen as partisan

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria to see extra ships after cruise company cancels Asia tour in wake of COVID-19

Coronovirus fears cause Celebrity Cruises to head west early

Sooke school superintendent says student safety a paramount concern

“We always want to make sure our students and staff feel safe,”… Continue reading

Roll of EI recipients in Greater Victoria stagnates

Statistics Canada says 2,140 people received EI benefits in December 2019, just as in November

Oak Bay ups deer management budget to $96,100 for 2020

Provincial grant approved for deer contraception program

UPDATED: Indigenous youth occupy B.C. Legislature steps amidst court injunction

Police negotiating with people gathered in support of some of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

VIDEO: B.C.’s seventh coronavirus patient at home in Fraser Health region

Canada in ‘containment’ as COVID-19 spreads in other countries

B.C. takes over another Retirement Concepts senior care home

Summerland facility latest to have administrator appointed

RCMP pull office from Wet’suwet’en territory, but hereditary chiefs still want patrols to end

Chief says temporary closure of field office not enough as Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute drags on

Prescription opioids getting B.C. addicts off ‘poisoned’ street drugs

Minister Judy Darcy says Abbotsford pilot project working

Teck CEO says Frontier withdrawal a result of tensions over climate, reconciliation

Don Lindsay speaks at mining conference, a day after announcing suspension of oilsands project

Okanagan man swims across Columbia River to evade Trail police

RCMP Cpl. Devon Reid says the incident began the evening of Thursday, Feb. 20

Most Read