Stikine MLA Doug Donaldson said Premier Christy Clark didn’t do enough to back up her words in a rare fall throne speech at the legislature last week.
During the first fall address in three years last Monday, Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon delivered the throne speech outlining the B.C. Liberals’ priorities in the coming months which focus on moving forward with plans to develop a liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry.
But Donaldson said the speech falls short and fails to go into specifics about how they intend to achieve their goals.
“There were a lot of missed opportunities in the throne speech. There were a lot of contradictory words as well,” said Donaldson.
“When you’ve got a thing like Mount Polley that happens and then you say ‘the land sustains us’, it’s incumbent upon them to prove in their blueprint that they recognize that many people have concerns about the cumulative affects of LNG development.”
He pointed out that there was no mention of the Northwest B.C. Resource Benefits Alliance, made up of municipalities in the region, who have met with the premier at the annual Union of British Columbia Municipalities last month to discuss revenue-sharing from such projects.
“She’s well aware of what they’re proposing,” said Donaldson. “They’re proposing that some of the benefits start flowing up front for communities to deal with the impacts of developments that are happening now and yet they didn’t take that opportunity in the throne speech.”
Donaldson also said he would like to see the premier conduct an environmental assessment to find out how LNG projects would affect the region and address the safety of women on the Highway of Tears with a public transit system.
“They could have put some meat to the words ‘the lands sustain us’ and ‘B.C. jobs and benefits to communities for resource development’ that they chose not to do and if you don’t back up you words with actions, people begin to distrust the government, in this case, even more,” he added.