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Government’s inaction on climate change fails to recognize public health emergency: B.C. Green leader

June 28, 2021

VICTORIA, B.C. – As British Columbians struggle to cope with the current heat wave, B.C. Greens Leader Sonia Furstenau, MLA for Cowichan Valley says the government’s failure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions underscores its failure to treat climate change as a public health emergency.

“This heatwave is exactly the type of extreme weather scientists told us would happen as a result of climate change,” said MLA Furstenau.

“B.C. is now facing a reality of extreme weather events or forest fires every single summer. 

“This heatwave poses a significant threat to British Columbians, particularly our seniors, our children and the most vulnerable members of society. Climate change is a public health emergency and we need to treat it like one. 

“The fact that this government insists on continuing to subsidize the fossil fuel industry to the tune of billions of dollars is unconscionable. This month, a report showed that the BC NDP has doubled these subsidies since they took power. The budget they just introduced anticipates a 30% increase in fracked gas in the coming years. We still don’t have a plan to meet our 2030 emissions reduction targets and the government missed their own deadline of December 2020 to close the gap. 

“Meanwhile, the latest IEA Net Zero report highlights that LNG investments are at high risk of becoming stranded assets. These deeply misguided handouts to the fossil fuel industry are not just bad for climate, they’re bad for the stability of our economy.

“On top of all this, the government continues to deploy stalling tactics as British Columbians cry out for them to preserve our last remaining old growth forests, which are some of the most efficient carbon sinks in the world. 

“I’m calling on the government to implement the recommendations of the old growth report, immediately end fossil fuel subsidies, reinvest that money in the clean economy and community resilience, and create a just transition for the B.C. economy.”

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Media contact
JoJo Beattie   
Press Secretary
B.C. Green Caucus
+1 250-882-6187 | [email protected]

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