Weaver denied an hour on climate change

MLA says the recent forest fires, water restrictions and air quality advisories point to an issue of great public importance

MLA Andrew Weaver is stunned his cohorts in the B.C. legislature wouldn’t spend 60 minutes discussing climate change last week.

“They seem to think no snow on the Olympic mountains, a drought and forest fires is just a one-off,” Weaver said. “We spent a whole week on LNG … but they didn’t want to spend one hour debating climate policy in B.C.”

The Oak Bay-Gordon Head MLA, deputy leader of the B.C. Green Party and climate scientist, called for an emergency debate on how British Columbia is responding to climate change, arguing that the debate is “a matter of urgent public importance.”

To be debated, matters of urgent public importance must be approved by the Speaker and granted leave by the House.

“It was mind-boggling … here we have all this happening around us and both the BC NDP and the Liberals stood and spoke against it so the Speaker had no choice but to rule against me,” Weaver said. “This to me was so utterly shocking because we see the effects of climate change all around us.”

He said forest fires, fishing bans, water restrictions and air quality advisories occurring at alarming rates are indicative of an issue of great public importance – climate change.

“It is sadly ironic that as our forests burn, snowpack melts and frequency of severe summer droughts increase, the government is forcing through its generational sellout embodied in the 25-year LNG agreement with Petronas,” Weaver said.

“The impacts and costs of climate change have never been clearer for British Columbians. It’s time we consider what kind of future we want.”