It’s Working: MPs’ Actions Show Impact of GreenPAC Endorsements

When GreenPAC formed in 2015, our fondest hope—and a key measure of our success—was that the elected officials we endorsed from all parties would actively promote strong environmental policies after they took office.

As the federal Parliament moves past the half-way point in its mandate, that leadership is beginning to hit critical mass. The country’s precious natural environment could be the big winner.

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Guilbeault : « Cette mobilisation citoyenne est très importante »

Équiterre est l’un des principaux organismes voués à la protection de l'environnement au Canada. Il s’agit de la concrétisation du rêve de jeunes universitaires passionnés d’environnement, à leur retour de la conférence de Rio il y a 25 ans. Nous avons interviewé l’un des cofondateurs, Steven Guilbeault, qui est maintenant porte-parole et directeur principal depuis 10 ans de cet organisme établi à Québec, Montréal et Ottawa et fort de 140 000 membres et sympathisants au Québec et aussi à l’extérieur de cette province.

Steven, qui a aussi travaillé pendant dix ans à Greenpeace, a toujours été près d’Équiterre. Il y consacre la majorité de son temps aux politiques publiques entourant la lutte contre les changements climatiques, les transports durables et les questions énergétiques. Il a notamment participé en 1995 à la première conférence des Nations Unies sur les changements climatiques, la COP 1.

Équiterre a joué un rôle de premier plan dans l’adoption de la taxe sur le carbone et du premier Plan d’action du Québec pour la lutte contre les changements climatiques. Cet organisme est aussi membre fondateur de Switch, l’Alliance pour une économie verte au Québec.

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Interning at GreenPAC: Being a Part of Something ‘Grand and Successful’

Dana Rushak holds a B.A. in environmental studies from York University and is completing post-graduate work in international development and management at Toronto’s Humber College.

What aspects of your work for GreenPAC have had the greatest impact?

The biggest project I’ve assisted with so far was GreenPAC’s annual Breakfast on the Hill. I helped contact MPs beforehand and ran registration during the event. I played a fairly small part given the size of the event, but it felt rewarding to be a part of something so grand and so successful. GreenPAC’s unique niche for environmental politics combines my passions and my skills so perfectly that every task feels meaningful and exciting. I never thought I would have the opportunity to take so much ownership in such a dynamic organization.

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Interning at GreenPAC: A Hands-On Opportunity to Make a Difference

Tina Lee is pursuing a double major in environmental studies and economics, with a minor in environmental geography, at the University of Toronto. She’s been working as an intern at GreenPAC since September.

What aspects of your work with GreenPAC have had the greatest impact?

I’ve worked at other companies and organizations before, but given their size, working as an intern has not always been the most meaningful experience. For such a small organization with limited staffing and time, GreenPAC’s output is pretty impressive, and all the work we do directly contributes to the organization in some way.

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Canada’s Global Climate Leadership Depends on a Cross-Partisan Approach

This week and next, Climate Action Network-Canada (CAN-Rac) will be on the ground in Bonn, Germany, participating in the 23rd United Nations climate change conference (COP 23). The organization will be encouraging Canada’s official delegation to play a strong, constructive role in implementing the Paris Agreement. For CAN-Rac Executive Director Catherine Abreu, the success of that effort depends on political leadership across the political spectrum.

“The struggle to ensure that climate change is a non-partisan issue is so relevant to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change,” she says. “We end up in these precarious positions where a change in government—south of the border, obviously, but we’ve seen it dramatically in Canada, as well— fundamentally shifts the roles countries play and the policies they bring to international climate agreements.”

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Parliament Hill Breakfast Shows Power of Cross-Party Environmental Leadership

There was a brief, shining moment in Ottawa last month that summed up everything we’ve been trying to achieve with GreenPAC since it got off the ground in 2015.

We began hosting an annual breakfast on Parliament Hill in 2016, and this year’s event took place October 19. The format and the setting supported what GreenPAC is trying to achieve in several ways: the breakfast spotlighted our endorsed candidates’ environmental achievements since they entered the House of Commons, brought the MPs together with many of our most active volunteers and supporters, and provided a venue to share ideas and successes.

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Nunavut Candidates Discuss Environmental Leadership in a Non-Party System

With elections in Nunavut coming up October 30, GreenPAC interviewed two candidates to shed light on the key environmental issues the territory is facing, and how they envision environmental political leadership in Nunavut, and Canada more broadly.

 

Given its geographic location, Nunavut faces some of the most tangible climate change impacts of any Canadian jurisdiction. Candidates Adam Lightstone, running in the Iqaluit-Manirajak constituency, and Franco Buscemi in the Iqaluit-Niaqunnguu riding, both said the climate crisis needs to be addressed now.

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GreenPAC Endorsee Pushes Private Member’s Bill to Protect Endangered Species

It’s a small piece of legislation that could have a major impact for endangered species. Which makes the story behind Bill C-363, An Act to amend the Species at Risk Act (SARA), a great example of what Canadians gain by putting experienced environmental leaders in Parliament.

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Environmental Leadership Depends on Sustainable Infrastructure

By Melissa Peneycad, ENV SP

If there’s any question about the importance of infrastructure in our daily lives, consider this: Infrastructure provides the basis for personal security and public health, shapes the economic viability and competitiveness of our communities, moves people and goods, provides us with drinking water and handles our waste, creates spaces for us to enjoy, and allows us to effectively communicate with one another. 

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Marine Protected Areas Point to Urgent Need for Political Leadership

If you aren’t quite feeling the right sense of urgency about the politics of marine protected areas in Canada, it might mean you’ve never lived in one of the Newfoundland towns that were devastated by the collapse of the cod fishery in 1992.

 

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