The B.C. Conservatives will oppose the building of a waste-to-energy trash incinerator in the Fraser Valley, party leader John Cummins announced Monday morning in Abbotsford.
Cummins said the party would block the controversial proposal by Metro Vancouver, which could potentially locate an incinerator in the Valley or Lower Mainland.
Cummins said that the airshed in the Fraser Valley needs to be protected. He said the region’s residents have previously opposed projects that would compromise local air quality, citing the defeated Sumas Energy 2 powerplant proposal as an example.
“Folks fought that successfully, and they feel the same way, you can rest assured, towards this incinerator.”
Cummins said Liberal MLAs won’t stop the incinerator from going forward, adding that Premier Christy Clark and environment minister Terry Lake are both in favour of seeing the project proceed.
“They have not supported the folks that live here … only Conservative MLAs oppose the construction of an incinerator here and do so vigorously.”
Clark told Black Press in March that the Liberals would not allow Metro Vancouver to impose any technology or waste-to-energy projects that would have a negative impact on the Valley airshed.
Following an announcement in Abbotsford, B.C. NDP leader Adrian Dix told The News that the airshed in the Fraser Valley is important, and his party will develop a plan to deal with the difficult question of garbage disposal.
Parties sound off on spending, seats
Cummins also spoke on the Conservatives’ goal of balancing the budget, saying both the Liberals and NDP are “tax and spend parties.”
“Neither party can get spending under control. Look at the spending of the Liberals over the last decade, and you would think that you were dealing with the NDP.”
Cummins said the Liberals have doubled the province’s debt – the same as the NDP in the ’90s.
Cummins’ comments came a day after finance minister and Abbotsford West MLA Mike de Jong announced the NDP’s proposed spending would send the province towards an economic fiscal cliff.
De Jong issued a press release on Sunday, stating that the NDP’s current plan features the same prolific spending that forced B.C. into have-not status under the NDP of the 1990s.
“One week into the campaign and all we’ve seen from (NDP leader) Adrian Dix is how fast he can spend your money.”
The comments were accompanied by a video of what the Liberal party calls the “Spend-o-Meter,” which purports to show the rising dollar value of NDP election promises, placing the number at over $2 billion.
“While the money is being spent very quickly, the NDP refuse to say how they’ll pay for it all or even provide any details.”
Dix was in Abbotsford on April 17 to reveal another piece of the NDP’s platform, proposing a $100-million, needs-based non-repayable student grant program to help students and increase the number of skilled workers in B.C.
At that time, he said Abbotsford West NDP candidate Sukhi Dhami is running to win de Jong’s seat. Dix said he is confident the NDP will take constituencies on May 14 that they have never won before.
At Monday’s announcement, Cummins said local candidate Paul Redekopp is also running to take Abbotsford West, citing de Jong’s seat as vulnerable.