Federal Leaders Support Conservation Plans for Canada – Press Release


July 22, 2015

Federal Leaders Support Conservation Plans for Canada

western red cedar
CEDAR – With the intention of raising interest in the environment, and support for sustainability, the Vancouver Island & Coast Conservation Society (VICCS) sent weekly questions to the five Federal Party Leaders in the final weeks of Parliament. The Bloc Quebecois deferred, and the Conservatives did not reply.

“We’re exceptionally pleased with the support and commitment expressed for conservation initiatives by three of the Federal Parties,” said Laurie Gourlay, president of VICCS. “Generally – and I’m quoting directly from the replies we received, the Party Leaders expressed support for a ‘balanced approach that would protect our lands, waters, and natural resources for the health and economy of this, and future, generations.”

The Leader’s replies have led VICCS to conclude that serious attention to conservation and sustainable development will follow if the Greens, NDP or Liberals either form government or hold the balance of power after the federal election this fall.

“Canadians should have a look at the results of our Conservation questions and make up their own minds,” says Gourlay. “Specific answers and calls for action are highlighted in our summary.”

According to VICCS the Leader’s replies, to the five Conservation questions, suggest there is:

1) – support for a Canadian Conservation Commission. (Green, NDP)

2) – support to declare December 11th ‘A Day For Our Common Future’, furthering sustainable development recommendations of the UN World Commission on Environment & Development. (Green, NDP)

3) – support to celebrate Confederation’s 150th anniversary in 2017 …accenting conservation and restoration of ecological systems, consultations that will engage the public across Canada, getting out in our National Parks system, and by rolling up our sleeves to put the country in shape for ‘the next 150 years’. (Green, NDP, Lib)

4) – support across the three Parties to “meet our international conservation targets” and national commitments to land, coastal and marine protection. (Green, NDP, Lib)

5) – support for initiatives and engagement that will encourage individual involvement and sustainable community development. (Green, NDP, Lib)

“We wanted to know if our Federal Leaders were committed to integrating conservation in plans for Canada’s future growth and prosperity,” said Gourlay. “And we are very pleased to see the priorities of the Greens, NDP and Liberals for conservation initiatives across the country.”

Questions were sent over a five week period. The full text of the Leader’s replies are available on request, and posted on the VICCS website along with summaries. <www.viccs.vcn.bc.ca>

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For more information:
Laurie Gourlay
President, VICCS
(250 722-3444)