Nova Scotia Provincial Budget Statement, 2023-24
While Nova Scotia’s 2023-24 budget promises much-needed and important investments in a healthcare system in crisis, the climate emergency is overlooked. We need to spend what it takes to rapidly transition to a green economy and adapt to an unpredictable climate.
We are all experiencing the crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. This government has promised practical solutions in EGCCRA and the Climate Change Plan, and yet, based on this budget, it appears it is not taking these promises seriously.
Healthcare, affordable housing and the environment are areas that are deeply intertwined, and we are losing time on the climate and biodiversity crises. If we don’t invest in climate solutions now, it will make other crises – including healthcare – worse. This budget, sadly, is missing a climate lens throughout that acknowledges how a fair transition will benefit communities, the economy and health care.
It is imperative that the goals and commitments in EGCCRA and the Climate Change Plan are properly resourced so that they can succeed. The EAC articulated many of these necessary investments in our pre-budget recommendations, but funding on environmental action is limited in this budget. Of the $41.4 million in direct funding for the climate plan, the vast majority – $34 million – was already earmarked for environmental initiatives through the Green Fund.
The provincial government says the Climate Change Plan will be further resourced, but it is not moving fast enough, and much more is needed for its implementation.
The Nova Scotia government showed today that a robust response to a crisis is possible. However, this budget fails to recognize concurrent emergencies, beyond health care, that demand our attention.
Read the provincial budget here.
Read EAC’s pre budget submission letter here.