Elec­tion de­bate

The Western Star - - FRONT PAGE - DIANE CROCKER [email protected]­ern­star.com Twit­ter: WS_DianeCrock­er

Long Range Moun­tains can­di­dates de­bated on the en­vi­ron­ment on Thurs­day.

COR­NER BROOK, N.L. — About 55 peo­ple turned out at Gren­fell Cam­pus in Cor­ner Brook on Thurs­day night to hear what two of the can­di­dates in the Long Range Moun­tains had to say about the en­vi­ron­ment.

Holly Pike, NDP, and Lu­cas Knill, Green Party, were the only two of four can­di­dates run­ning in the rid­ing to take part in the de­bate.

Lib­eral in­cum­bent Gudie Hutch­ings was trav­el­ling in the rid­ing and Con­ser­va­tive can­di­date Josh Eisses lives in Hal­i­fax.

Or­ga­nized by the Western En­vi­ron­ment Cen­tre and the En­vi­ron­men­tal Pol­icy In­sti­tute at Gren­fell, the event was part of the na­tion­ally co-or­di­nated 100 De­bates on the En­vi­ron­ment Project.

The can­di­dates were asked eight ques­tions dur­ing the event, four set by na­tional or­ga­niz­ers and four by lo­cal or­ga­niz­ers.

Each of the can­di­dates was pro­vided with the ques­tions prior to the event and re­sponded us­ing pre­pared an­swers.

One of the ques­tions asked was: What do you think should be done to curb plas­tic waste and to clean up the enor­mous amounts of plas­tic garbage that al­ready ex­ists?

Here is each can­di­date’s re­ply:

LU­CAS KNILL, GREEN PARTY

“It’s very sad walk­ing along the beach or a trail and see­ing waste or plas­tic just sit­ting there.

“The Green Party pro­poses to im­ple­ment an ex­tended pro­ducer re­spon­si­bil­ity pro­gram, sort of like the one for the ghost nets. To hold man­u­fac­tur­ers fi­nan­cially re­spon­si­ble for the wastes that they gen­er­ate.

“Mov­ing for­ward that we should re­quire all prod­ucts to be fully re­cy­clable us­ing read­ily avail­able pro­cesses.

“And we must deal with our own waste and phase out the ex­port of solid waste to other coun­tries.

“The Green Party pro­poses a plas­tic life-cy­cle ad­vi­sory board with peo­ple from all sec­tors within the life cy­cle of plas­tic, as well as all lev­els of govern­ment.

“By 2022, the Green Party will ban the pro­duc­tion, dis­tri­bu­tion and sale of all un­nec­es­sary or non-es­sen­tial, pe­tro­leum-based, sin­gle-use plas­tics, such as bags, straws, bal­loons, uten­sils, cig­a­rette fil­ters.

“The Green Party rec­om­mends ex­tend­ing the ban on mi­cro-beads to in­clude house­hold and in­dus­trial clean­ing prod­ucts.

“As well as by 2021 re­quir­ing all new wash­ing ma­chines sold in Canada to have a re­mov­able clean­able fil­ter to cap­ture the mi­cro-fi­bres.”

HOLLY PIKE, NDP

“Well, some busi­nesses and com­mu­ni­ties as we know have al­ready made moves on the prob­lem of excessive plas­tic by no longer pro­vid­ing plas­tic bags or plas­tic straws, or by ban­ning other kinds of sin­gle-use plas­tics.

“This is a start, and it en­cour­ages us all to be more mind­ful of our bad habits. Which is also part of curb­ing plas­tic waste. If we don’t want the stuff, then there’s no rea­son for any­one to pro­duce it.

“The NDP will elim­i­nate sin­gle-use plas­tics by 2022 and hold com­pa­nies re­spon­si­ble for the en­tire life cy­cle of their plas­tic prod­ucts and pack­ag­ing. Be­cause with­out con­sis­tent reg­u­la­tions on pack­ag­ing that will force man­u­fac­tur­ers to deal with the waste cre­ated by their own prod­ucts we can’t hope to achieve zero waste or even low waste.

“We’ll help mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties im­prove waste man­age­ment and re­cy­cling pro­grams and work con­sis­tently to­wards a zero-waste fu­ture.

“We’ll work with mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties and In­dige­nous groups and pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ments to clean up ex­ist­ing plas­tic waste in our com­mu­ni­ties. Re­cy­cling that waste wher­ever it is pos­si­ble to do so.

“A con­certed ef­fort co-or­di­nated be­tween all lev­els of govern­ment is the only ef­fec­tive way to ad­dress the pro­lif­er­a­tion of plas­tic in our en­vi­ron­ment and that’s what we’ll be un­der­tak­ing.”

“It’s very sad walk­ing along the beach or a trail and see­ing waste or plas­tic just sit­ting there.”

“If we don’t want the stuff, then there’s no rea­son for any­one to pro­duce it.”

DIANE CROCKER/THE WESTERN STAR

Long Range Moun­tains can­di­dates Lu­cas Knill, left, Green Party, and Holly Pike, NDP, are seen dur­ing Thurs­day night’s de­bate on the en­vi­ron­ment at Gren­fell Cam­pus in Cor­ner Brook.

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