VICTORIA, B.C. – Andrew Weaver, leader, and Adam Olsen, spokesperson for agriculture for the B.C. Green Party caucus, endorsed the provincial government’s legislation to protect B.C. farmland. The legislation includes two policies, to limit house size on ALR and to return the ALR to a single zone, that Weaver and Olsen have previously called for.
“These measures will strengthen our local food security and improve opportunities for the economic development of our agricultural sector,” said Weaver.
“As the impacts of climate change take hold, B.C.’s agricultural land is increasingly more valuable. The two zone system brought in under the previous government opened up our irreplaceable farmland to development that was completely unrelated to farming. Returning the ALR to a single, dedicated zone will put our province in a far stronger position, both from a security and an economic perspective.”
The return of the ALR to a single zone was part of the B.C. Green Party’s 2017 platform. The B.C. Green MLAs have subsequently called for the province to limit house sizes on ALR in question period over the course of the last year.
“I am very relieved that the government is taking action to stymie speculation on farmland so that it can remain affordable for local farmers,” said Olsen.
“The proliferation of mega-mansions on B.C. farmland has driven up prices at a time when the industry faces a demographic crisis. The cost of farmland is cited as the number one barrier to young farmers hoping to enter the market. Keeping farmland at a price that is competitive for farmers, not real estate speculators, is crucial.”
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