Friday, September 19, 2014

New poll confirms overwhelming support in BC for the ALR

As Opposition spokesperson for agriculture, I have very important news to share with you: a poll released this week shows that more British Columbians than ever want strong protections for B.C. farmland.
Commissioned by the Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia and the Vancouver Foundation, the poll found an astounding 95 percent of British Columbians believe our Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) should be preserved for green space and growing food.
A full 80 percent of those polled were concerned about our dependence on other countries for our food supply.

The New Democratic Official Opposition shares this concern. We have always fought hard to strengthen agriculture in our province.
We all should be concerned. California is in the midst of its worst drought in more than 500 years, with no end in sight. Climate change is the greatest threat to global food production in our time.
In B.C. we have the potential to increase our agricultural production for ourselves and for others – that’s why it’s critical to protect the ALR. I’ve spent much of the summer at so-called consultation meetings about regulation changes that will weaken protections for 90 per cent of the land in the ALR. 

These changes are being rammed through by the B.C. Liberal government, just like they rammed through Bill 24 last spring.
The B.C. government promised to consult about the changes. Then they held invite-only meetings on short notice, in the middle of harvest season, while barring both the media and the public.
This new poll shows why the B.C. Liberals didn’t want the public to have any say in this destructive legislation that puts our farmland at risk.
Thank you for your strong support of B.C.’s homegrown food industry, B.C. farmers and B.C. farmland.
Lana Popham, MLA and agriculture spokesperson
PS. The fight to protect the ALR is not over! We will continue to work to protect B.C.’s farmland. If you can help, please let me know: lana.popham.mla@leg.bc.ca