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April 22nd, 2013

Statement by Official Opposition Environment critic Megan Leslie on Earth Day

Earth Day is an opportunity for Canadians to take action to preserve our planet and to demand action from governments.

Each of us has the power to make changes and collectively we can have a significant, positive impact on our environment.

The overwhelming scientific consensus is that climate change is a growing problem that requires immediate, forward-thinking attention. Unfortunately, instead of taking steps to reinforce environmental protections, the Conservatives have gutted existing laws, made cuts to science and research and have failed to take sufficient action on climate change. Conservative changes to fish habitat protection, the Navigable Waters Protection Act and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act will compromise the quality of life of future generations.

Unlike the Conservatives, New Democrats know that failure to address climate change and sustainably develop our natural resources will be disastrous not only for the environment, but also for Canadians’ health and economic prosperity. For us, the environment is a priority so that our children and future generations inherit a healthy planet. This is an issue of intergenerational equity and fairness.

We call on the Conservatives to take Canada’s domestic and international responsibilities seriously; implement the Cohen Commission’s recommendations; and cancel budget cuts to fisheries, science and ecosystem management.

The NDP will continue our efforts to fight climate change. Together, we can build a fairer Canada and a greener world.