Newly elected B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks to Union of B.C. Municipalities convention, Victoria, Sept. 24, 2020. (UBCM)

B.C. Green leader says NDP abandoning environmental plan

Horgan’s claim of unstable government false, Furstenau says

NDP leader John Horgan is walking away from his environmental agenda and his justifications for a surprise fall election “have no basis in fact,” B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau says.

“I am speaking to you 10 days into my new role as leader, nine months into the global pandemic and four days into the most unnecessary snap election campaign imaginable,” Furstenau told local government delegates to the Union of B.C. Municipalities Sept. 24.

“From my perspective, a state of emergency due to a viral pandemic is not the time to leave our province without a minister of health. A state of emergency leading to an economic collapse is not a time to leave our province without a minister of finance. A state of emergency at the start of the school year, with students and teachers worried about outbreaks in their classrooms, is not a time to leave the province without a minister of education.”

Horgan has repeatedly blamed the B.C. Greens for destabilizing his minority government so that he had to call the Oct. 24 provincial election a year early, violating his signed agreement with the Greens. Speaking by video conference from the UBCM convention at the Victoria Conference Centre, Furstenau reminded mayors and councillors from around B.C. that she met with Horgan days before the election call and promised she and fellow Green MLA Adam Olsen would continue supporting the NDP government until October 2021 as their 2017 post-election deal stipulates.

RELATED: Voters ‘disgusted’ by election call, B.C. Liberal leader says

RELATED: Horgan rejects ‘so-called stable administration’ with Greens

The NDP and Greens worked hand in hand on multiple projects, the most prominent being a greenhouse gas emissions reduction plan dubbed CleanBC.

“Because of the NDP’s approval of the heavy emitting LNG Canada fossil fuel project, B.C. is miles off track from its legislated greenhouse gas reduction targets, and the CleanBC plan remains only 75 per cent complete,” Furstenau said. “That work, to bring it to 100 per cent, was due to be completed this fall.”

A long-time NDP supporter, Furstenau won her Cowichan Valley seat for the B.C. Greens after a long battle as a regional district director over a contaminated soil facility near Shawnigan Lake. The B.C. Greens’ 2017 breakthrough to go from one seat to three, and increase popular vote across the province, was largely at the expense of the NDP, which timed its election call while Furstenau was just beginning to build a team that would seek candidates for all 87 B.C. constituencies.

Furstenau noted that Horgan, former health minister Adrian Dix and others have repeatedly praised the cooperation of the B.C. Greens in the past three years, including in a government news release on Furstenau’s work on early childhood education and the response to the pandemic.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicsBC Votes 2020

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The last forum before the election on Saturday focused on health care.
Boundary-Similkameen candidates talk health care over digital forum

The Support Our Health Care Society hosted the forum

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Thanks to efforts by a Kelowna shelter and Elections BC, anyone who wishes to can vote in the 2020 BC Provincial Election, even if they don’t have a fixed address. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Kelowna group ensures people experiencing homelessness can vote

Shelter supervisor says voting ‘a fundamental right’ even for those without a fixed address

The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen is planning to implement transit service in the West Bench area in September, 2021. (Black Press file photo)
Regional district to bring transit service to West Bench in 2021

Residents of area near Penticton will be consulted before plans are finalized

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
Big White receives 21 cm of snow in 24 hours

Resort’s snow base 41 cm deep, one month until opening day

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Members of Summerland council and municipal staff were present on Oct. 22 to officially open the expanded Summerland landfill facility. From left are manager of environmental services Candace Pilling, Coun. Erin Carlson, Coun. Marty Van Alphen, acting mayor Doug Holmes, Coun. Richard Barkwill and Coun. Erin Trainer. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Changes made to entrance of Summerland landfill

Upgrades came at cost of $500,000

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

Most Read