Climate Change Priority

What we've asked:

Nova Scotia needs to commit to firm climate change targets and enact legislation to reduce emissions by 50% below 1990 levels by 2030.

The EAC calls on the next Nova Scotia government to reduce emissions and grow the green economy by implementing: a phase-out of coal-fired electricity; fair and effective carbon pricing; expanded energy efficiency programs; and training programs for workers entering the growing green economy.

For more information on some of our efforts and projects that contribute to meeting this goal click here, or contact stephen@ecologyaction.ca
 

What we've heard:

The following sources outline the official positions and commitments of all parties.

Environmental Issues Election Debate

On May 16th, we invited the parties to a public Environmental Issues Election Debate, and asked: "Will you commit to reduce emissions by 50% below 1990 levels by 2030, and how will you achieve these targets while strengthening the green economy?" (Timestamp 0:23:55)

The parties replied to our debate question in the following way:

Listen to the candidates' replies using the following timecodes: 

Jessica Alexander, Green Party, (0:24: 17)
Rob Batherson, PC, (0:25:22)
Iain Rankin, Liberal, (0:26:19)
Lisa Roberts, NDP, (0:26:57)

EAC Election Priorities Questionnaire

On May 10th, we wrote to the leaders of the five parties running in the 2017 provincial election to ask: "Will you commit to firm greenhouse gas reduction targets of 50% below 1990 levels by 2030? To support the above goal, what investments in emissions reduction programs and in training and support programs for workers and communities will your party make?"

We received the following replies to our election priorities questionnaire:
 
"We joined the New England Governor and Eastern Canadian Premier’s and committed to reducing our regions greenhouse gas emissions to 35%-45% below 1990 levels by 2030. Nova Scotia has not only made this commitment, but we are on track to meet those targets and possibly exceed them. [...]
The Liberal Party stands firm in our protection of the environment and the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. That is why in our election platform we have committed to maintaining the moratorium on onshore fracking. [...]
 
We will have a cap & trade system in place by 2018 that will be in-line with the federal agreement requirements. The Nova Scotia cap and trade system will be a performancebased approach and will deliver real and significant GHG reduction in a way that is affordable to tax payers. [...]
 
A re-elected Liberal Government will continue to explore tidal power as a renewable energy source. [...]
 
A Liberal Government, if re-elected will continue to invest in the Connect-2 program for sustainable transportation which currently receives $600,000 per year for community grant programs. [...]
 
As part of our Electricity Plan we are investing $700,000 this year in smart energy projects that will help develop sustainable energy solutions. We have also created a Solar for Community Buildings Program. [...]."
 
"An NDP government would consult with Nova Scotians and establish a hard target for 2030 by the end of year 1 of our mandate, in the context of the ten-year review of the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act. [...]
 
We believe a government should be trying to encourage, not limit renewable energy generation. An NDP government will work with stakeholders to increase this limit. [...]
 
An NDP government would invest $12 million over 4 years to provide greater financial assistance to all those wishing to convert to a more efficient home heating system. [...]
 
An NDP government will provide $7 million in core funding to sustainable transportation initiatives [...] Whether it’s getting to work, medical appointments or the grocery store, we need to help those who do not have their own means of transportation and encourage those who do to lessen their carbon footprint by using public transit."
 
"As Progressive Conservatives, we’re proud to have passed the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act (EGSPA). It was ground-breaking legislation that set our province on the path to a greener, more successful future. Now, we must build on that success. A Jamie Baillie government will modernize EGSPA and set new targets for the next 30 years.
 
These actions will have a more positive impact on our environment than any form of Liberal carbon tax. We oppose Liberal carbon taxes that make life more expensive for Nova Scotians and don’t protect our environment."
 
"The Atlantica Party agrees in principle with the lofty goals of eliminating carbon pollution, being more efficient and climate change remediation. However, we resist changes that add to the burden of the Nova Scotia taxpayer. It is unreasonable to expected additional costs to be added given already overly burdensome taxes, costs, risk and levies now carried by citizens. For instance, the Carbon Tax imposed on Nova Scotia would be more reasonable if thought had been given to our existing penury, taxes should be lowered elsewhere by the same amount. [...]
 
Nova Scotia is a small, economically unstable, weak and badly run province. The best strategy for a Nova Scotia climate change plan is to first fix the economic problem and create prosperity. [...] It is also important to remember that often the most dynamic and rapid changes in society come from the private sector; this should not be just a governmental affair."
 
"The Green Party of Nova Scotia would like to go further and to establish reasonable absolute target. Nova scotia has been a considerable contributor to GHG emissions in the past, and a reasonable percentage reduction still leaves us at the top of polluters in Canada. This is not only unacceptable, but Nova Scotia could even be a leader in a new economy based on sustainable practices and new technologies.
 
The Green Party of Nova Scotia would like to invest actively in promoting new technologies and alternative sustainable energy production such as photovoltaic, tidal pwser, geothermal and wind. An essential way to move forward with these are feed-in tariffs and the phasing-out of subsidies to the carbon industry."
 

Party Platforms and Announcements

The following excerpts are from the parties officially released platforms that specifically address climate change. Please follow the hyperlinks to access the full documents.

PC Platform
"We will pass a Clean Air Act to set enforceable standards for emission control and hold polluters responsible for noncompliance" (p. 20).

"As Progressive Conservatives, we’re proud to have passed the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act (EGSPA). It was ground-breaking legislation that set our province on the path to a greener, more successful future. Now, we must build on that success. A Jamie Baillie government will modernize EGSPA and set new targets for the next 30 years.

These actions will have a more positive impact on our environment than any form of Liberal carbon tax. We oppose Liberal carbon taxes that make life more expensive for Nova Scotians and don’t protect our environment" (p. 21).

NDP Platform 
"We will: Continue to support the work of Efficiency One in reducing energy consumption. Work towards creating a carbonneutral government. Establish new programs to encourage renewable energy generation" (p. 12).

"We will: Fight climate change by legislating a hard target for Green House Gas emission reductions for 2030 by the end of Year 1 of our mandate" (p. 12).

Liberal Platform
"We will pass legislation to implement a Nova Scotia Cap and Trade system, continuing our leadership on fighting climate change through a made-in-Nova Scotia approach to cutting greenhouse gas emissions" (p. 21)

"To improve energy affordability, we recently enhanced the non-electric, home energy efficiency program by adding $7.5 million to the program’s budget and extending it to on-reserve First Nations communities. This program provides energy efficiency assessments and whole home retrofits to low-income Nova Scotians at no cost. Expanding this program will help fight climate change, while helping Nova Scotians save on home heating costs" (p. 21) 
 
Atlantica Platform
No mention of climate change or greenhouse gas reductions.
 

Green Platform
"Green MLAs want to: implement a Fee and Dividend Energy Security Plan; use a small percentage of the income from Fee and Dividend Energy Security Plan to enhance public transportation systems and stimulate alternative energy capacity; reduce our reliance on coal immediately; end all exploration of oil and gas in Nova Scotia, including fracking;perform energy audits on public buildings and implement changes to reduce operating costs; where possible, use renewable energy to power existing provincial buildings; improve building construction standards for new construction to reduce energy consumption; continue to encourage conversion from radiant electric to air source heat pumps; and ensure that Nova Scotia Power pays electricity producers a guaranteed price for their energy (feed-in tariffs)" (p. 21)

 

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