Victoria – You get to sound off on your climate concerns. The Province put out a media release stating: To ensure B.C.’s future climate actions reflect the values of British Columbians, Premier Christy Clark invited members of the public to tell government what they would like to see in B.C.’s new Climate Leadership Plan, to be released later this spring. The next public engagement for the Climate Leadership Plan will launch on Monday, Jan. 25 and will run for 60 days.
“The input British Columbians have provided to date has been very helpful as we develop B.C.’s new Climate Leadership Plan,” said Premier Clark. “Now is the time to engage even further in the conversation, as we seek to build on our global leadership through our next set of climate actions.”
Similar to the first public engagement that ran last summer, this next round will also be web-based. Concurrent with the public engagement, sector-specific industry consultations will also take place, along with public polling by Ipsos Reid.
In addition, Premier Clark also announced she will chair a new cabinet working group on climate leadership that will oversee government’s climate actions and policies, while considering current and future provincial climate action goals.
The new members are:
- Environment Minister Mary Polak, vice-chair
- Finance Minister Mike de Jong
- Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training Minister Shirley Bond
- Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett
- Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Todd Stone
- Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Peter Fassbender
- Natural Gas Development Minister Rich Coleman
As with previous cabinet working groups, other ministers may also be asked to participate as necessary. The working group will remain in effect after the release of British Columbia’s Climate Leadership Plan later this spring to ensure the plan remains relevant and effective in helping the Province achieve its greenhouse-gas reduction goals.
“The formation of the cabinet working group reflects one of the recommendations from the Climate Leadership Team,” said Polak. “This group will help us to make sure we keep our government’s climate actions current and ensure we remain on pace to achieve our emissions reduction targets.”
“British Columbians’ input will help strengthen our final Climate Leadership Plan and ensure that it represents the values and actions that British Columbians support,” said Merran Smith, executive director of Clean Energy Canada and member of the Climate Leadership Team. “We applaud the appointment of this cabinet committee on climate change. It is a good step and signals the priority that government is giving to meaningful climate action.”
“Communities across this province rely on B.C. industry and businesses for jobs and to grow our economy,” said James Gorman, vice president, corporate and government relations, West Fraser Timber and member of the Climate Leadership Team. “This is an important opportunity for B.C. business to be heard and to ensure any changes to provincial carbon policies allow B.C. industries to remain globally competitive.”
The next round of public engagement is the latest step in the development of B.C.’s new Climate Leadership Plan.
Last spring Premier Clark appointed the Climate Leadership Team, made up of leaders from B.C. businesses, communities, First Nations, academia and the environmental sector, to provide advice and recommendations to government for its new Climate Leadership Plan.
In the summer the Province launched the first round of consultation towards a new plan, engaging with the public and First Nations, as well as local governments and organizations to find out their climate action priorities. Government also received over 200 detailed written submissions and more than 300 template letters.
This feedback helped inform the Climate Leadership Team as they created their recommendations for the new climate plan, which were submitted in late November.
The Province’s final Climate Leadership Plan will be released this spring, and will include new climate actions to drive down emissions while supporting a growing economy.
More details about the second round of public consultation on B.C.’s Climate Leadership Plan will be announced soon. For more information on the development of the plan to date, please view the Climate Leadership Plan website at: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/climateleadership