NDP Leader Adrian Dix puts Christy Clark's Vancouver–Point Grey seat in jeopardy

    1 of 1 2 of 1

      Today, NDP Leader Adrian Dix ramped up his criticism of the B.C. Liberal party's position on oil tankers along B.C.'s coastline.

      In so doing, he's sent a direct message to voters of Lower Mainland constituencies, including Christy Clark's, that they should dump their B.C. Liberal MLAs if they're concerned about another Exxon Valdez–style accident fouling local waterways.

      In a party news release, Dix "challenged Premier Clark to tell British Columbians where she stands on Kinder Morgan’s plans to dramatically expand oil tanker traffic off BC’s south coast, and on the Enbridge pipeline that would do the same off the north coast".

      “The BC NDP does not support a radical transformation of the ports of Metro Vancouver into major oil export facilities,” Dix said in the news release. “The revised Kinder Morgan proposal would significantly increase tanker traffic passing by Stanley Park. Nor do we support ending the moratorium on oil tanker traffic on our North Coast."

      He characterized Clark's stance on pipelines as "trust me". 

      “But if the price from Ottawa or Alberta is right, she’s prepared to support a massive increase in tankers and the environmental risks that they pose," he claimed.

      There are political implications that flow from Dix taking this position in advance of the election.

      Three Lower Mainland constituencies that the NDP is hoping to take away from the B.C. Liberals have a large number of environmentally minded voters: Vancouver-Point Grey, Vancouver-Fairview, and North Vancouver–Lonsdale.

      In all three cases, the NDP has recruited star candidates with impressive green credentials.

      Civil-rights lawyer David Eby is hoping to defeat Clark in Point Grey, which includes the main UBC campus.

      George Heyman, who's been executive director of the Sierra Club of B.C., is challenging the health minister, Dr. Margaret MacDiarmid, in Vancouver-Fairview.

      This is the same constituency represented by Gregor Robertson from 2005 to 2008—and it's full of middle-class and upper-middle-class cyclists like Robertson, who care about climate change.

      City of North Vancouver councillor and Langara history professor Craig Keating is taking on the minister of state for small business, Naomi Yamamoto, in North Vancouver–Lonsdale. The City of North Vancouver has one of Canada's greenest municipal governments, thanks in large part to Keating and the mayor, Darrell Mussatto.

      Dix's criticism of the Enbridge and Kinder Morgan pipeline plans is solidifying their candidacies and threatening the premier's job as the MLA in Vancouver–Point Grey. Her constituency stretches west from Arbutus Street between Kits Beach and West 16th Avenue—an area heavily populated by environmentalists.

      The NDP's stance will also help with aboriginal voters, who are, by and large, opposed to pipeline projects.

      Keating's constituency includes a Squamish Reserve, and North Vancouver–Lonsdale's eastern boundary isn't far from the Tsleil-Waututh Reserve.

      The Musqueam Reserve is just south of Vancouver–Point Grey.

      Aboriginal people comprised five percent of the provincial population in the 2006 census.

      In certain areas, such as Prince George, the percentage of residents of aboriginal descent exceeded 10 percent in 2006.

      Dix needed to do something for these voters after mostly sidestepping the Idle No More movement and not calling for a ban on fish farms along wild-salmon migration routes.

      Native voters can conceivably swing seats in the NDP's favour in up to 10 or more constituencies.

      This point seems to be lost on B.C. Liberals, who've been quick to slam Dix's stance on pipelines.

      It's one more reason why the NDP will probably win the election on May 14.

      Join the discussion

      We're now using Facebook for comments.
      Read Old Comments


      Just Wondering

      May 4, 2013 at 12:12pm

      Go get them Adrian! Credibility is on your side!


      May 4, 2013 at 12:29pm

      She is the Sarah Palin of BC.


      May 4, 2013 at 1:05pm

      In Vancouver-Point Grey, the NDP have campaigned like never before, and succeeded in working with a record number of UBC students to mail in their Vancouver-Point ballot for NDP candidate David Eby, before leaving for their home province. After all, UBC students have a vested interest in the outcome of the BC election, and in the case of the students who live in student housing, or elsewhere in the riding, during the course of the school year, it is important that they feel enfranchised, and that there voices are heard loud and clear on election day, May 14th!

      Ojala verde

      May 4, 2013 at 2:18pm

      Libs may squeak by with a win but Clark will lose her seat cause women voters hate her.


      May 4, 2013 at 4:59pm

      I had to laugh at Mr. Dix's presser from kits beach this morning. There were the usual dozen or so ships anchored of the coast (container ships and yes I counted at least one oil tanker). The NDP roadies and camera crew seemed quite perplexed as to how to shoot the footage without including the ships in the background. After viewing the footage, it seems they managed to shoot a nicely deceptive advertorial with tight shots and camera angles to minimize the ships waiting to enter port. Having lived off kits beach for 25 years, the only environmental issues I have observed is the junk that has washed ashore from the squatters that anchor in their sailboats. A few weeks back, one sank and the small beach by the Marine Museum was littered with medical supplies, styrofoam plastic bottles and various parts other parts of the sunken squatters boat. After the last few windy days, I see sunset beach is now plagued with a squatters boat that was washed up and now sits empty on the beach.

      Earl Richards

      May 4, 2013 at 6:24pm

      There will be no Exxon Valdez's in the waters between Vancouver Island and the mainland. It is time to get-off oil and gasoline. Plug your Tesla S, electric car into your household, 6.88KW solar array.

      Coastal F.N

      May 4, 2013 at 6:39pm

      Dix is the one not to be trusted. NDP not clear on position of LNG and How Economy will rebound. Economy on Northwest coast terrible for a number of years but wait what do you in lowermainland care?

      Captain of the post-election "review" speaks up.

      May 4, 2013 at 9:27pm

      Dix is challenging someone else to take a stand on an issue. Now that's rich.

      John G

      May 4, 2013 at 9:56pm

      I voted Liberal last election, but after Clark put all her hopes in fracking and LNG, I, along with many others, will vote NDP or Green on May 14th. The Environment and Green Energy economy are very important to us, and only Dix and Sterk seem to care about BC's environment.


      May 5, 2013 at 7:19am

      Christy will sell us out not nesecarily to the highest bidder .