WEST VANCOUVER, BC – A Liberal government will take immediate steps to protect our oceans, safeguard our marine and coastal habitats, and ensure a more beautiful and prosperous country for our children and grandchildren, said the Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau, today.
“Liberals will build a better country and a sustainable economy that gives hard-working Canadians a real and fair chance to succeed. We will improve the air we breathe, the water we drink, the parks and beaches where our children play,” said Mr. Trudeau. “From coast to coast to coast, that means investing in the protection of our oceans – the health of which is vital to safeguarding our environment and growing our economy.”
A Liberal government will:
- Meet Canada’s international commitments by increasing the amount of our protected marine and coastal areas from 1.3 percent to 5 percent by 2017, and 10 percent by 2020;
- Reinstate the $40 million cut from the federal government’s ocean science and monitoring programs, and restore scientific capabilities at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans;
- Re-establish thorough environmental assessments, review all amendments made by the Harper Conservatives to the Fisheries Act and other legislative changes, and incorporate modern safeguards to protect our ocean and freshwater fish habitats;
- Work with provinces, Indigenous Peoples, and other stakeholders, to effectively co-manage our oceans; and
- Formalize the moratorium on crude oil tanker traffic on British Columbia’s North Coast – including the Dixon Entrance, Hecate Strait, and Queen Charlotte Sound – and ensure that ecologically sensitive areas and local economies are protected from the devastating impacts of a spill.
“For ten years, Stephen Harper has refused to take meaningful action on the environment – slashing environmental protections, muzzling scientists, cutting overall science funding, and allowing other countries to take the lead on pressing issues like climate change,” said Mr. Trudeau. “We can’t afford to let this continue.
Our plan will protect our oceans and grow our economy, and make a real, positive difference in the lives of all Canadians.”
Backgrounder – Protecting our oceans