February 3rd, 2020
Dear Sonia Furstenau,
Congratulations on being the first entrant into the B.C. Green Party’s leadership race at this important time in our province’s history. It is exciting that a grassroots community activist is now so likely not only to ascend to the leadership of B.C.’s third party, but also to command the balance of power in the legislature.
I am writing because we, the B.C. Ecosocialist Party, are evaluating how we can intervene the current B.C. legislature, and in the coming provincial election. We hope that your Green Party, unlike your immediate predecessor’s, would be interested in collaborating to build an Eco-socialist future for B.C. We are particularly hopeful that a Green Party under your leadership would turn the page on the more egregious aspects of the party’s policies and record since 2013.
- Given your passion for evidence-based decision-making, would your Green Party take notice of the many studies showing that Uber and other de-regulated taxi services increase congestion, emissions, sub-minimum wage work, and sexual violence, and work to evict them from our province?
- Given your background as a social democrat prior to your involvement with the Greens, would you rescind the Greens’ opposition to card certification of trade unions and support for keeping B.C.’s minimum wage lower than adjacent jurisdictions like Alberta and Seattle?
- Given your opposition to harmful mineral extraction, over-cutting and clearcutting would you rescind the Greens’ support of Clean B.C. targets, which promise to double the number of mining and logging vehicles on B.C. roads?
- Given your stated support for reconciliation and, especially, for the Wet’suwet’en land protectors, would your Green Party oppose Coastal GasLink receiving its final environmental permit, and work to pull the permits already awarded for the Horgan Pipeline from the Peace to Kitimat?
- Given the NDP’s violation of the 2017 Confidence and Supply Agreement (CSA) with your party, with respect to the Site C dam, the Transmountain Pipeline and other serious matters, are you prepared to renegotiate the CSA, and if a satisfactory renegotiation is not possible, cease voting to support the government?
Most importantly, we would like to know whether the B.C. Green Party, under your leadership, would continue voting for fracking and other fossil fuel subsidies in the budget, as your party has in the 2014, 2018, and 2019 provincial budgets. Your speeches against the LNG subsidies in the legislature have been passionate and powerful. You voted against the package of subsidies for the massive LNG projects the Horgan government plans to build in Squamish and Kitimat. Fortunately, on February 18th, you will have an opportunity to vote against not just those subsidies but the existing packages of fracking and other fossil fuel subsidies that the 2020 provincial budget will contain.
Our most pressing question is this: will you make support for the provincial budget contingent on ending fossil fuel subsidies in B.C.? In many ridings throughout B.C., including all of Vancouver Island, a clear majority of voters cast ballots for parties promising exactly that. In your own riding, 57 percent of voters voted to end fossil fuel subsidies just four months ago. Will a Sonia Furstenau Green Party cease to actively facilitate the Horgan government’s plans to massively increase B.C.’s contribution to global carbon emissions?
It is our hope that you will seriously consider these proposals. It is our hope that you will see our growing movement as a natural partner for your party, rather than John Horgan’s climate nihilist government. Our planet is running out of time. We cannot afford to accelerate the climate catastrophe that we are already facing, as the government that you support proposes to do. We hope to enter the coming election as partners rather than competitors of a renewed Green Party that has rediscovered its principles under your leadership.
On behalf of the B.C. Ecosocialist members,
Luis Porte Petit Campo