10 MAY 2013
Fredericton - Green Party Leader David Coon says the Alward government's Oil and Gas Blueprint is nothing more than a public relations exercise to put a ribbon around fracking, noting a majority of New Brunswickers do not support the practice.
"Incredibly, the Oil and Gas Blueprint fails to make the protection of public health one of its key priorities, despite the recommendations of our Chief Medical Office of Health," said David Coon. "And surprisingly, it relies entirely on a 25 year old outdated regulation for environmental assessment to protect the environment, " said Coon.
09 MAY 2013
Finance Minister Blaine Higgs has turned down a Right to Information request made by Green Party Leader David Coon for studies carried out for the government on shale gas royalties.
The Green Party leader had requested copies of the contractual agreements made with consultants contracted to evaluate and/or propose shale gas royalty systems or taxes, along with copies of their reports to government.
07 MAY 2013
Fredericton - At a news conference this morning, the Green Party called for the Alward government to establish a Royal Commission on Retirement Income to examine the state of retirement income in both the public and private sectors.
"The first duty of pension trustees, such as the Province, is to the beneficiaries of that trust" said Norman Laverty, the Green Party's advocate for economic and social development, and a former Superintendent of Pensions for the Government of New Brunswick. " The Province intends to violate its role as trustee by abandoning retroactively its commitments to pensioners in the public sector. It's unacceptable," said Laverty.
06 MAY 2013
Green Party Leader David Coon wants the Alward government to immediately table its bill to overhaul NB Power so there is sufficient time for the Law Amendments Committee to hold public hearings before the Legislature rises for the summer.
"New Brunswickers gave their all to save NB Power from being sold to Hydro Québec, so they deserve the right have a say in NB Power's future," said Green Party leader David Coon. "There needs to be sufficient time to send the bill to the Law Amendments Committee so it can hear from the public, but it appears that the Tories are holding back," said Coon.
Since being elected in 2010, the Alward government has been working to rewrite the Electricity Act, the legislation that governs the operation of NB Power. The last time major changes to NB Power were contemplated, there was a very extensive process of public engagement.
Green Party Leader David Coon says that Tory and Liberal support for expanding the oil and gas industry has undermined their commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
In the past 11 years, carbon emissions from the electric power sector have declined by almost 17%, decreasing by 1 million tonnes, while emissions from fossil fuel production and refining have more than doubled, increasing by 1.3 million tonnes, according to the latest data published last month inEnvironment Canada's National Inventory of Greenhouse Gas Emissions.
"Climate change is raising the cost of everything from household insurance and groceries to road repairs and flood compensation," said Green Party leader David Coon. "The Alward government must establish a legally-binding cap on carbon emissions and table a credible climate action plan before it contemplates releasing an oil and gas blueprint," said Coon. "The doubling of emissions from the oil and gas sector has cancelled out all of the progress we made to get emissions down in the electric power sector," he said.
The Lord and Graham governments committed to lowering New Brunswick's emissions to 1990 levels by 2012. The Alward government committed in its Energy Blueprint to achieve a further 10% reduction by 2020. As of 2011, New Brunswick's emissions were 16%, or 2.6 million tonnes, higher than they were in 1990.
New Brunswick's first climate action plan expired last year and has not been replaced.
30 MARCH 2013
After visiting the riding of Kent on Wednesday, Green Party leader David Coon announced that the Greens are not running a candidate in the April 15 byelection.
"We will not run a parachute candidate in the Kent byelection like most of the other parties," said Coon. "Our potential local candidates were not able to offer to run on such short-notice, and given they would have to do it all over again in the general election just 18 months from now, they chose to wait this one out," said Coon.
"What I heard when I visited the riding on Wednesday is that people are not happy with the parties parachuting candidates into their communities, so we will not run someone from outside," said Coon.
27 MARCH 2013
Green Party Leader David Coon says that Finance Minister Blaine Higgs refusal to rescind the 2009 income tax cuts made by the Graham government, is a choice to cut public services and public jobs instead. The Green Party says that the 2009 income tax cuts created New Brunswick's structural deficit, and that restoring them would eliminate it.
"It is unbelievable that the Minister of Finance would pass up the chance to slay the deficit simply to keep New Brunswick's income tax rates lower than anywhere else in Eastern Canada," said David Coon, Green Party leader. New Brunswickers are going to pay in lost services and a perpetual deficit," said Coon.
25 MARCH 2013
In laying out his expectations for tomorrow's budget, Green Party leader David Coon says it must ensure that people and their communities come first, warning the government's efforts to bring revenues and expenditures back into balance cannot be merely a matter of arithmetic.
The Green Party has maintained the fairest approach to redressing New Brunswick's structural deficit is to rescind the personal and corporate income tax cuts made in the 2009 budget, which at the time the Party predicted would create the structural deficit the province now carries.
01 MARCH 2013
Green Party Leader David Coon is calling on Premier Alward to convene an emergency summit of Maritime Premiers to create a common front in the face of Stephen Harper`s relentless attack on the fabric of the Maritimes.
25 FEBRUARY 2013
Full press statement
Green Party Leader David Coon announced at a news conference today that he is launching a tour of the province to visit business, cooperative and social enterprises which are building a new economy in New Brunswick.
"A new economy is growing the shell of the old unsustainable one," said David Coon, Green Party Leader. All across this province there are entrepreneurs, cooperatives, primary producers, artists and social innovators who are reshaping our economy into one that is more local, greener, less dependent on fossil fuels, and accessible to all. And it doesn't involve fracking or pipelines from the Alberta tar sands, he said."