MB Votes 2019: Will you commit to a timeline for phasing out industrial activities in provincial parks?
Full question: A July 2018 poll found that 70 per cent of Manitobans support a phase-out of industrial activity from provincial parks. Whiteshell, Nopiming and Duck Mountain are currently being affected. Will you commit to a timeline for phasing out industrial activities in provincial parks?
Green Party of Manitoba
The Green Party of Manitoba central office sent a response on behalf of most of their candidates. See exceptions below.
All industrial activities in provincial parks will be phased out and eliminated, the only industry in parks should be tourism.
Liz Clayton, Green Party of Manitoba, Agassiz
All industry in parks will be phased out under a Manitoba Green government.
Martha Jo Willard, Green Party of Manitoba, Notre Dame
Provincial Parks are set aside to protect wildlife, provide a place to preserve plants, trees, and animals that naturally occur in Manitoba, and for us to learn to appreciate nature. Ecosystem preservation is but one piece of protecting this planet.
The Whiteshell is one of the most popular parks in Manitoba and must not be developed any further, and especially not used for any sort of industrial activities that are for profit. Preservation of nature does not include mining activities or other commercial activities.
The Whiteshell Park has remote and intact wilderness sections which are important sanctuaries for wildlife, away from the busy recreation areas, and should not be disturbed. To increase any activities of a commercial nature will impact these animals and plants and cannot be tolerated. Damaging our ecosystems has to be limited. Trees are one of the best carbon capture mechanisms we have so they and the ecosystems of birds, insects, and mammals are well organized, independent units that are not made for humans to damage.
A revealing Probe Research survey from summer 2018 states, “There’s a strong consensus across all population groups in Manitoba to abolish industrial activities in provincial parks.” In October the international IPCC climate change report stated that to avoid catastrophic climate change we must protect forests. Preservation of wildlife areas (parks) is the direction we must take as devastating wildfires have already disrupted many forests. Clear cutting forests for building housing subdivisions and for farming have also already damaged the natural balance needed for the planet and for our kids and grandkids futures.
In most jurisdictions around the world, industrial activity like mining would never be allowed in a park. Manitoba must take the very same approach. We successfully banned logging in parks. All other commercial activities must also be banned. NOT SURE? Just read the IPCC report. It is a terrifying picture of what is ahead if we don't rapidly change course and "live one with Mother Earth." The first settlers, who are our Indigenous peoples, had it right all along.
No mining or other commercial activities can be permitted. We need to increase our forest size, not decrease it or disrupt it.
Janine Gibson, Green Party Manitoba, Steinbach
I support an immediate phase-out of industrial activity from all provincial parks. Whiteshell, Nopiming and Duck Mountain are currently being affected and the industrial activity must be stopped as soon as possible.
Andrea Shalay, Green Party of Manitoba, Union Station
Industrial activities should not come at the cost of our natural heritage. All industrial activities in provincial parks will be phased out and eliminated. I believe that all industrial activities, regardless of location, need to account for their long-term environmental impact and should account for those costs.
David Nickarz, Green Party Of Manitoba, Wolseley
I would work, both within government and with civil society to immediately end all industrial activity in provincial parks. This includes logging, mining, oil and gas activity and any other industrial activity.
Progressive conservative Party of Manitoba
The Manitoba NDP central office sent a response on behalf of all of their candidates.
“We are committed to ensuring any industrial activity in Manitoba respects the strictest regulation and licensing regimes. We know regulation is important – that is why the Manitoba NDP banned logging in provincial parks. We are committed to preserving our parks in Manitoba.”
Manitoba Liberal Party
The Manitoba Liberal Party central office sent a response on behalf of most Liberal candidates. See exceptions below.
“Industrial activity in Provincial Parks has become problematic due to a lack of proper environmental assessments and consideration of the effects on wildlife. Any industrial activity, anywhere in Manitoba should have a full, public environmental assessment to ensure that the community is informed and that any negative impacts can be fully investigated before any approval is made. Manitoba should be protecting provincial parks.”
Dr. John Gerrard, Liberal Party, River Heights
Yes. I believe we need to start by stopping any new leases in provincial parks and then moving forward from that point to have a plan to implement stricter environmental standards for any industrial activities within provincial parks and implementing a plan to phase out future industrial activities in our provincial parks, with the possible exception of some limited logging used as a strategy to replace forest fires (which generate large amounts of carbon dioxide emissions) in managing forest habitat in a fashion that decreases carbon dioxide emissions and increases carbon storage.