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On Quebec climate bill, where is the urgency to act? “Eventually, maybe,” says the Minister of the Environment
QUÉBEC CITY, February 6, 2019 - In an unprecedented move, the opposition parties today rallied around rapidly adopting a bill aimed at respecting Quebec’s climate commitments. Mr. Legault’s government must now act accordingly and rapidly on this issue, which is widely supported by both the public and opposition politicians, says the Pact for Transition team.
“The signers of the Pact are to be congratulated, the communal pressure they are exerting is working: the three opposition parties now support the idea of a bill requiring the government to meet its targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This is not a victory, since Premier François Legault refuses at this point to commit to it. However, we’ve won a first round, and this confirms that we need to take the pressure up a notch,” said Dominic Champagne, initiator of the Pact, at a press conference held at the National Assembly.
Earlier in the day, the Quebec Liberal Party tabled a motion in the National Assembly to adopt such a bill, joining the Parti Québécois and Québec Solidaire, who had already declared that they are in favour of a climate bill. “To the three opposition parties, we say: hats off! And to the Premier, we say: adopt a climate bill, it’s what the majority of Quebeckers, and presumably a good part of your own constituents, expect from you!” Mr. Champagne added.
“Mr. Legault needs to choose. Either he is sincere in saying that he wants to meet the targets for greenhouse gas reduction, or else he is hedging and keeping room to manoeuvre. If he refuses to adopt a law to ensure we uphold our climate commitments, it means he wants to be able to make decisions that are incompatible with targets that he claims to support publicly,” Mr. Champagne pointed out.
The citizens’ movement for protecting the climate is becoming more and more important. Here in Quebec, as elsewhere in the world, calls for climate strikes are being launched and young people are mobilizing. One thing is certain: spring promises to be hot in terms of climate mobilization.
“Quebec has what it takes to be a driving force for environmental transition in North America and could position itself as a real leader, an inspiration for the rest of the world. Mr. Legault’s government is fortunate to be in the right place at the right time, and could make history. It would be unfortunate to miss this major opportunity”, says Laure Waridel, eco-sociologist, PhD and co-author of the Pact.
Source: Dominic Champagne, Pact for Transition | www.lepacte.ca