Abbotsford South Green Party candidate Aird Flavelle. (Aird Flavelle/Special to The Star)

Abbotsford South Green Party candidate Aird Flavelle. (Aird Flavelle/Special to The Star)

VIDEO: Aird Flavelle only Abbotsford South candidate to answer climate change questions

TWU Environment Club and Climate Crisis Langley Action Partners hosted zoom meeting last week

Langley and Langley East candidates took part in an all-candidates meeting on Zoom last week that was focused solely on climate change.

Hosted by Trinity Western Environment Club and Climate Crisis Langley Action Partners, eight candidates answered three questions asked by TWU students and three questions asked by viewers.

Abbotsford South candidates were subsequently sent those same questions to answer; only one candidate submitted responses.

Climate Crisis Langley Action Partners member Kirk Robertson said Abbotsford South Green Party candidate Aird Flavelle gave responses while Liberal Bruce Banman, NDP Inder Johal, and Christian Heritage candidate Laura-Lynn Thompson did not reply.

Below are the questions asked and Aird Flavelle’s responses.

QUESTION: Old-growth forests are crucial habitat for endangered species, a key part of our tourism industry and play a large role in our fight against climate change. And yet, our current government continues to allow the logging of the 3% of old-growth forests that remain in B.C.. What will you and your party do to protect these important forests?

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: I will work tirelessly to stop the logging of our old-growth forests.

QUESTION: Between 1980 and 2014, an average of 9.6 million adult sockeye salmon returned to the Fraser River. This year, just over 280,000 returned. From salmon farms to climate change, our wild salmon, a pillar of this province, are under attack. What will you and your party do to protect them and their habitat?

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: This dramatic reduction in our sockeye runs needs to be addressed as urgently as possible. I will urgently work towards identifying the reasons for the declines and then work urgently to mitigate or rectify those problems.

QUESTION: The oil and gas industry is the largest emitter of greenhouse gases in Canada, responsible for 27% of total emissions in 2017, so it is crucial we move away from these industries. What will you and your party do to help and support Canadians transitioning away from these jobs and onto green careers?

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives release a study in March entitled “Winding Down BC’s Fossil Fuel Industries”. The study confirms that a managed wind-down of BC’s fossil fuel industries is good for the climate, good for jobs and good for communities.

I am very concerned about B.C. families in who are supported by our fossil fuel industries but lately I’ve been seeing more and more articles and studies that say we can transition those jobs all to the new, clean economy.

QUESTION: In the light of the recent forest fires, what steps are being taken or will be taken to prevent the occurrence of such disaster in the future?

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: I’ve been hearing assorted reasons for the fires. I want a credible scientific investigation to guide us appropriate measures to prevent or manage future fires.

QUESTION: How will you support a transition into more sustainable forms of transportation in your riding and Metro Vancouver?

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: I will work towards measures to stop building our cities in a manner that prioritizes automobiles. We must have huge increases in our bicycle infrastructure, and we must make all of our roads vastly more pedestrian friendly.

I want to see light-rail transit connecting Chilliwack and Abbotsford to the new Langley Skytrain station.

QUESTION: Despite having the most biodiversity in all of Canada, and more than 2,000 species at risk of extinction, B.C. does not have its own standalone Species At Risk law. What will you and your party do to protect B.C.’s wildlife and the people, communities and industries that depend on them.

AIRD FLAVELLE’S RESPONSE: Last year a group of B.C. academics and scientists wrote a scathing opinion piece wherein they speculate that our lack of protecting Species At Risk stems from the totally unfounded fear of economic damage.

I will work to rectify this ecological disaster as soon as possible.

READ MORE: Eight Langley and Langley East candidates talk climate change in all-candidates meeting

More than 85 views were logged on throughout the initial all-candidate’s event between 7 and 8:30 p.m on Wednesday, Oct. 14 – moderated by TWU student Natalie Cook.

People can find out more at www.facebook.com/ClimateCrisisLangley.

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Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@aldergrovestar.com

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