Photo: Candidates in B.C. byelection share views on climate action

All candidates said they would continue to use the B.C. carbon tax as an important tool to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (Credit: Yume Photo via Flickr)

By Ian Bruce, Climate Change Specialist

British Columbians in Vancouver-Point Grey head to the polls tomorrow in a provincial byelection that could determine the political future of the current premier. In the lead-up to the vote, the David Suzuki Foundation asked each candidate to share their vision of how B.C. will address climate change in the years ahead.

We questioned Liberal candidate and current premier Christy Clark, NDP candidate David Eby, and Green Party candidate Françoise Raunet about their commitment to the carbon tax, clean energy, and other solutions that would make B.C.'s communities healthier and more sustainable.

And guess what? We got responses back just in time to share with you. Although there are noticeable differences between the candidates' responses, there are also encouraging signs that each one sees the environment as a priority issue for British Columbians.

For example, all parties said they would continue to use the B.C. carbon tax as an important tool to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. What's also clear is that each candidate is open to investing some revenues from this tax in other climate solutions, such as public transit and making homes more energy efficient.

What remains uncertain for most of these candidates is how much they would grow incentives for clean energy in the coming years by raising the price on carbon pollution, which is a big factor in making the tax effective. It's also unclear what steps they would take to improve B.C.'s public transit systems so that it's a faster and more efficient way to travel for people across the province.

As a charity, the David Suzuki Foundation can't tell you who to vote for. It's up to you to check out each candidate's response and decide for yourself. What we can say is that these are the kinds of questions you should expect your candidate to pay attention to. Your vote makes a difference in our future — make it count tomorrow!

Read Liberal candidate Christy Clark's responses (PDF).
Read NDP candidate David Eby's responses (PDF).
Read Green Party candidate Françoise Raunet's responses (PDF).

May 10, 2011