Skip to content

Council of Canadians calls on the B.C. NDP & Greens to cooperate to stop extreme energy projects

The Council of Canadians Vancouver-Burnaby chapter at a protest against the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline, May 2016.

The Council of Canadians is calling on the NDP and Green Party in British Columbia to cooperate to stop Liberal Premier Christy Clark’s environmentally-destructive extreme energy projects in that province.

That includes the 890,000 barrel per day Trans Mountain pipeline, proposed liquefied natural gas projects like the Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal, and the Site C hydroelectric dam project now under construction on the Peace River.

While the final results will not be confirmed until May 24, the tally now from the May 9 provincial election is: Christy Clark’s Liberals (43 seats), John Horgan’s NDP (41 seats), Andrew Weaver’s Green Party (3 seats).

Given 44 seats are needed to pass budgets and bills in the BC Legislature, there are two likely scenarios following from this.

CBC has explained, “The first involves one party fully in control of cabinet and the executive branch of government, but regularly negotiating with other parties in order to get enough votes to pass legislation. The second approach is a coalition government where a formal agreement is made between multiple parties, usually involving the sharing of cabinet posts, along with guarantees on certain pieces of legislation and how decisions will be made. Much would depend on who the Green Party would pledge to support and under what conditions it would be offered.”

This morning, CBC National Affairs Editor Chris Hall highlights, “It’s not much of a secret that Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government wanted to see Christy Clark re-elected this week as premier of British Columbia. As it stands, B.C. will have its first minority government since 1952, and the wheeling will soon begin to see whether Clark’s Liberals or the second-place New Democrats led by John Horgan can do some dealing with the B.C. Green Party and form a government. Either way, the uncertainty poses a risk for the federal government’s approval of Kinder Morgan’s expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, and its approval of the equally controversial Site C hydroelectric dam on the Peace River in northeastern B.C.”

While the Green Party has twice voted in support of Liberal budgets, Weaver has also denounced Clark’s agenda to develop the LNG sector and her approval of the Kinder Morgan pipeline. He has also described the Site C dam as “fiscally foolish, socially irresponsible and environmentally unsound”.

The Council of Canadians online action alert, launched within hours after the election, notes, “NDP and Green Party voters have clearly expressed opposition to Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline, Site C and the expansion of the LNG and fracking industry. They want B.C. to embark on a just energy transition process and ensure Indigenous rights are respected. …The NDP and Green Party earned about 57 per cent of the popular vote to the Liberals’ 41 per cent, giving them the legitimacy needed to move forward and collaborate on the crucial issues they’ve been advocating for.

To send an e-mail to Horgan and Weaver asking them to work together to address these pressing issues, please click here.

During this provincial election, five Council of Canadians chapters – Comox Valley, Chilliwack, Williams Lake, Cowichan Valley, Delta-Richmond – held events with all candidates. The Vancouver-Burnaby chapter distributed 1100 leaflets on key election issues and the Victoria chapter endorsed the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs’ ‘Vote Anyone But Clark’ online campaign. Furthermore, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow did a five community speaking tour that highlighted water protection issues that reached 1140 people, and Vancouver-based water campaigner Emma Lui developed a social media campaign with infographics opposed to fracking.

The Council of Canadians is a non-partisan organization that endorses no political party, but rather is committed to building a peoples’ movement capable of holding any government accountable to the public interest.