Economic Action Plan 2013 Act No. 2

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague from Compton—Stanstead.

The most important thing on the subject of biodiversity in the omnibus bill is the issue of the selling off of federal properties in British Columbia. Bill C-4 calls it the Dominion Coal Blocks. This area of over 60,000 hectares is very important to the region’s biodiversity. It is very important because there are also plans for a national park in that region.

I would like to ask my colleague if he agrees that it would be better to examine this very important proposal in a separate bill.


Jean Rousseau: Mr. Speaker, these are indeed examples of environmental legislation that should not be lumped together in a Sears catalogue or phone book, especially since those things are nearly obsolete. Legislation on biodiversity, which is so important for the environment, cannot be properly addressed in this way.

We were talking about belugas in the St. Lawrence. Studies and research have been done, but once again, the scientists who conduct this research are being muzzled and all of their hypotheses and evidence are being refuted.

Whether in western Canada, on the Pacific coast or on the Atlantic coast, this research is vital to Canada’s future and to the environment. The study of climate change begins with studies of seabeds in our national parks. Changes have been observed in the migration routes of ducks, geese and Canada geese in the fall, specifically because the biodiversity and flora have changed in the lakes where they once stopped over before heading further south. There are many in my riding and some on the land right beside where I live. It seems as though these birds no longer know where to go.

The impact of climate change is measurable, which is why we need research. This kind of legislation should definitely not be included in such an omnibus bill.