Statement on World Environment Day and Canadian Environment Week 2018

June 05, 2018
(OTTAWA) – Elizabeth May (MP, Saanich-Gulf Islands), said: “While we have made progress on many environmental issues, the Canadian government’s performance over recent years has been lacklustre. For example, it once marked this important week by providing resources to environmental groups, giving them the capacity to create more awareness about environmental issues. But that kind of forward thinking is now almost forgotten.”

“In the west, wildfires are more common and more severe than ever; and everywhere, more and more homes and neighbourhoods are being destroyed by floods as insurance bills keep rising. Human activity is disrupting the earth’s balance and we need to rediscover the momentum we once had towards more sustainable lifestyles and an economy that respects environmental imperatives.”

“Decades of work in the environmental movement prove clearly that where we have made progress – on acid rain, eutrophication, ozone depletion, lead contamination, air quality, and more – it has been accomplished through regulation. Legally enforceable measures, requiring pollution to be reduced, are effective. Pricing mechanisms (like carbon taxes) are helpful, but on their own, they have not played a significant role in our historic wins. It is time to get serious about climate change and use all the tools in our tool kit – pricing, tax-incentives for energy efficiency, and regulating to reduce GHG emissions.”