Statement from Gord Johns on the Global Climate March

November 29th 2015

Statement from Gord Johns, newly elected NDP Member of Parliament for Courtenay-Alberni, on the Global Climate March.

“I am humbled by the trust you have placed in me, and I will work tirelessly to make Canada a more fair, greener, and more just country.

In this last election, we turned the page on the Harper Conservatives and their tendency to deny the realities of climate change or pit region against region in effort to take no action whatsoever.

Thanks to people like you here today, that era has ended and now thankfully we have a new tone from Ottawa. The new Liberal government has made important commitments to Canadians and the world. But words must be backed by real action.

The Climate Conference in Paris will only be considered a success if countries agree on: binding emission reduction targets; concrete plans and credible accountability mechanisms for reaching these targets; and, assisting the developing world with transition and climate mitigation.

And real action means those commitments are backed up here in Canada by setting ambitious, accountable emission reduction targets - with annual progress reports for meeting targets enshrined in Canadian law;

It also means strengthening Canada's environmental assessment processes by including climate impact assessment so new projects will not derail reduction targets.

We can only get there by bringing everyone together, including: first nations, all levels of government, industry (like the many innovative industries here on Vancouver Island) community groups, faith organizations, young people and concerned citizens like you and me.

We need to build bridges and work across party lines. Let's leave Harper's politics of division squarely in the past. The impacts of climate change force us to move beyond the simple ideologies and partisan games.

Canadians are ready to take leadership in this global effort and leadership means actually reducing Canada's greenhouse gas emissions.

And I'm hopeful that in this new era we have the political will to take bold action, and get the job done.

Along with your progressive opposition I will push for a real plan for Canada to tackle climate change.

Together we can do this. Thank you.”