Nova Scotia Provincial Election 2021 | Ecology Action Centre

Nova Scotia Provincial Election 2021



This August, Nova Scotians will go to the polls to elect our next provincial government. As we face down the intersecting crises of climate change, rising inequity and biodiversity loss, we don’t have time for leaders who are stuck in outdated ways of thinking about our environment and our economy. We need true leadership and political will to protect the communities and ecosystems we all love and rely on and ensure a future where everyone living in Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia can thrive.  

Nova Scotians are ready for transformative change. Any party that wants to lead our province must be ready to stop investing in the things that no longer serve us or set our society back. They will need to spend what’s needed to ensure an equitable, sustainable future where no one is left behind and support resilience and our communities’ ability to take care of themselves in the face of an unstable climate. We need leaders that do more than make empty promises: we need an ambitious vision for our future and concreate steps for how to achieve it. No more B.S. 

No more B.S. Let’s demand better from our elected officials. 

What do we mean by no more B.S.? Aside from the obvious, we simply mean no more Bad Stuff! No more Big Subsidies to corporations that threaten our environment and our climate. No more Bad Stewardship of the natural spaces we love. No more Burning Stuff like fossil fuels and biomass. No more Bad Salmon farming threatening our marine ecosystems. No more Backwards Systems that fail to take care of our communities. Let’s demand better and vote for candidates who will commit to building a more equitable and sustainable future for everyone living in Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia. 


EAC’s four asks 

But this election isn’t just about what we don’t want to see. If we are to build a better future for our province, we need immediate, ambitious and measurable action from our next government. We’ve put together four asks that we believe will set Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia on track to building a future where our environment and our communities can thrive and get the support they need to transition to a green economy:  


Bold Climate Plan 

  • We have a legislated target to reduce GHG emissions by 53 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030. In order to get there, we need 90 per cent of our electricity coming from renewable sources by 2030, targets and incentives for electric vehicles and investments in energy efficiency and building retrofits. We also need to stop spending money on outdated industries that threaten our climate and the long-term stability of our economy like offshore oil and gas, large scale biomass, and natural gas. 


Resilient Communities 

  • In an increasingly unstable climate, our communities need to be adaptive and resilient. This means investing in vibrant and accessible local food systems and active transportation, and integrating climate adaptation concerns in all decision-making across all government departments. It means that our coastal communities are protected from sea level rise and that all municipalities are provided with adequate funding to implement their Municipal Climate Action Plans.  


Healthy Ecosystems 

  • To ensure a liveable and sustainable future for Mi’kma’ki/Nova Scotia, we need to do more to protect the ecosystems we all rely on. This means increasing protected areas, reforming our forestry practices, and banning harmful industries that threaten our province’s biodiversity like open net pen aquaculture and large-scale biomass burning. 


No One Left Behind 

  • We must ensure that all our communities are given the support they need to thrive, and that we all benefit from the transition to a green economy. This means creating thousands of good, green jobs and a just transition for workers, updating environmental decision-making processes to include a race-equity lens and ensuring all provincial laws are consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). 


Additional Resources:

Party Platform Analysis

We've reviewed available environmental party platforms to provide a picture of where each party stands on a variety of critical environmental, biodiversity and climate issues. This analysis is not an endorsement of any of Nova Scotia’s political parties or their candidates and is not a reflection of their previous work on the environment.   

The targets and promises of each of the parties are taken from their platforms and/or websites, except where otherwise indicated. As of noon on Friday, July 30, the Liberal party platform plank on the environment had not been released but is expected to be released before Wednesday, Aug. 4. We have included excerpts from their website and we will update the analysis after the platform becomes available.  The EAC obtained a full-length version of the PC platform by contacting their office.  

EAC's Party Platform Analysis was updated on Thursday, August 5, 2021.

Click here or on the image above to download the Party Platform Analysis document.


What to ask at the door

The results of the 2021 Nova Scotia provincial election will set the tone for locally-based environmental action for the next four years. This election season, you can help make climate, biodiversity and environmental justice top election issues. This toolkit is designed to help you, as a community member or representative of a community organization to engage your candidate on top environmental issues. Check out our What to ask at the door document:

Click here or on the image above to download the What to ask at the door document.

Click here for more details and specifics on our asks, including briefing notes, our 21 Goals to Advance the Environmental and Economic Well-Being of Nova Scotia and other helpful resources and reports.  


All Party Environmental Debate

On Wednesday, August 4, EAC, Sierra Club Atlantic Canada Chapter and the Council of Canadians hosted a debate to hear parties' positions on critical issues related to the climate and biodiversity crises.

The debate was held at the Ummah Mosque and Community Centre in Halifax and live-streamed on YouTube.

Opening remarks were done by Maggy Burns, executive director with EAC.

The moderator was Sheldon MacLeod, journalist and host with

Participating Candidates: 

  • Jessica Alexander - Green Party of Nova Scotia, Interim Leader and Candidate for Chester-St. Margaret's
  • Pam Cooley - Nova Scotia Liberal Party, Candidate for Dartmouth North 
  • Scott Ellis - Nova Scotia PC Party, Candidate for Halifax Needham 
  • Tyler Colbourne - Nova Scotia NDP, Candidate for Dartmouth East  


All Party Debate Q&A summary and transcript

We've summarized the candidates answers to the evening's questions and created a full transcript of the debate so that you can see where each party lies on a variety of crucial environmental issues. 


Click here or on the image above to download the Q&A summary document.

Click here or on the image above to download the full transcript document.

Watch the recording below!