Thursday, July 29, 2010

My Favourite Green Bean Salad

BC Green Beans are ready!

I most look forward to two vegetables in the summer. One of them is tomatoes and the other is green beans. Fresh, local or homegrown, green beans are incredibly delicious! This is my favourite recipe for green beans. It's a cold salad and is a perfect addition to a summer dinner and very easy to take to a potluck or BBQ.

Figure out how big a salad bowl you want to use and have the appropriate amount of beans to fill that bowl.

Start by taking the stems and pointy ends off the green beans. Snap them in half and put them into a bowl. While you are doing that you can put a large pot of water to boil on the stove.

When you have finished preparing the beans, drop them into the boiling water for 3 minutes. After 3 minutes, take them off the stove, drain them in the sink, and rinse them with cold water until the cool down. (Sometimes I even save the rinse water by having a bowl underneath the colander and then dump it onto my garden after.)

Once the beans have dripped dry, place them into your salad bowl.

Add 1/2 cup jarred sundried tomatoes in olive oil. They come cut-up or not. If they are not chopped, you will have to chop them.

Add a few swirls of good olive oil.

Add 3 cloves finely chopped garlic.

Add add 1 1/2 cups grated Asiago Cheese.

Add fresh ground pepper.

Add a pinch of salt.

Toss until beans are covered.

This is good the next day too!

Friday, July 9, 2010

For the Record!

I'm often asked what I do when I'm sitting in the House. Quite a lot! Here is a list of all the questions, statements and motions that I made in the Legislature during the last session. The links will take you to the Hansard transcript.

    Popham, Lana (Saanich South)
    • As subject
    • Agricultural land reserve
    • Agriculture
      • crops, pollination 5880
      • government support 3186-7
      • hemp industry 4790
    • Agriculture and Lands Ministry
    • Autism
      • early intervention program and treatment services, funding 3186
    • Bees
      • population health 5880
    • Bike to Work Week
      • events in Victoria 5962
      • purpose 5966
    • B.C.
      • issues, community and environmental issues 3452
      • population, aging population 3765-6
    • B.C. Liberal Party government
      • action on stated goals 3184-7
    • Budget debate 3183-7
    • Buy B.C. program
    • California
      • agriculture industry 3186
    • Climate change
      • impact on agriculture and food supply 4448
    • Consumption Tax Rebate and Transition Act
    • Cordova Bay Elementary School
      • students and teachers 3184
    • Cycling
      • commuter cycling 5962
    • Economy
      • knowledge-based economy, government support 3186
    • Education
      • system, system during B.C. Liberal Party administration 3184
    • Education, funding 4625
    • Employment and unemployment
      • job creation, government action 3186
    • Environment
      • environmental assessment process 3452-3
      • protection and sustainability, government action 3185-6
    • Fires and firefighters
      • firefighters, role 3291
    • Food
      • food security 4448-9
      • locally grown food, production and support 4449
    • Forests and forest industry
      • job protection, petition tabled 4566
    • Girl Guides of Canada
      • organization and activities 3788
    • Harmonized sales tax
      • impact on bicycles and repairs 5966
      • impact on cycling 3184-5
      • petition tabled 5050
    • Health, public health
      • government promotion of healthy lifestyle and physical fitness 3184
    • Highway 17 (Patricia Bay Highway)
      • improvements, government investment 3185
    • Infrastructure
      • transportation infrastructure, government investment in sustainable transportation infrastructure 3185-6
    • Literacy
      • programs and services, funding 3184
    • Lyme disease
      • awareness and prevention 5541-2
    • Motions
      • Federal-provincial environmental assessment process, debate 3452-3
      • Food security and production plan for B.C., debate 4448-9
      • Sustainable wild salmon stock and aquaculture, debate 5950
    • NDP
      • vision for sustainable B.C. 3452-3
    • Olympic Games, 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver-Whistler
      • athletes, accomplishments of Canadian athletes 3184
    • Oral questions
      • Buy B.C. program 2982
      • Harmonized sales tax on bicycles 31095966
      • Importation of bees and beekeeping equipment to Vancouver Island 5885
      • School district costs and funding 4625
    • Pensions
      • pension income, gender disparity 3765
    • Petitions
      • harmonized sales tax 5050
      • harmonized sales tax on bicycles 3110
      • protection of B.C. jobs and old-growth forests on Vancouver Island 4566
    • Poverty
      • poverty among senior women, government action 3765-7
    • Premier's Council on Aging and Seniors Issues
    • Private members' statements
    • Private members' statements (response)
      • Industrial hemp 4790
    • Saanich
      • cycling trail system 3185
    • Saanich fire department
      • services and fundraising 3291
    • Saanich South constituency and area
    • Sales tax
      • exemption for bicycles 31093185
      • exemption for bicycles, petition tabled 3110
    • School district 63 (Saanich)
    • Seniors
      • government action on issues 3765-7
      • terminology to describe seniors 3765
    • Social Credit Party
    • Statements by members
      • Bike to Work Week 5962
      • Firefighters 3291
      • Girl Guides of Canada 3788
      • Lyme disease awareness 5541-2
      • Role of honeybees in agriculture 5880
      • Velox Rugby Club 4970
    • Vancouver Island
      • beekeeping, regulation of imported bees and equipment 58805885
      • forest industry, protection of old-growth forests, petition tabled 4566
      • south Island, economy and transportation infrastructure 3185-6
    • Vancouver Island Technology Park
    • Velox Rugby Club
      • history and activities 4970
    • Veterinarians Act
    • Welfare
      • support system for vulnerable persons 3186
    • Women

Friday, July 2, 2010

Government hiding information and failing to protect Wild Salmon - at the same time!

The government's decision to hide information about the sea lice infestation in and around the province’s fish farms is more evidence of both their failure to protect wild salmon, and their failure to follow Freedom of Information requirements.

Both Ecojustice and the T. Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation have asked the government to provide sea lice infestation records from January 2004 - March 2010.

But the BC Liberal government is denying their request despite the fact that the government just lost a six year battle to conceal 2002-03 sea lice infestation records from the public.

Dr. Alexandra Morton, an expert in sea lice who has studied wild salmon for years in the Broughton Archipelago says: “Hiding disease reports certainly raises the question: what don’t they want us to know. The only Fraser sockeye in collapse are those migrating past salmon feedlots."

It is clear that wild salmon need improved protection from human-caused impacts. And I believe strongly that the best way to protect jobs on the coast - in tourism, commercial fishing and aquaculture - is to protect the environment that sustains these activities.

We can become a world leader in sustainable aquaculture and create new green jobs while opening up markets to a product British Columbians can be proud of.

But for that we will need this government to have a change of heart - or we need a new government.

I applaud MLA Doug Routley, the New Democrat Critic for Citizens' Services for raising the issue of transparency and accountability.

He points out that the Freedom of Information and Privacy Commissioner has already ordered the B.C. Liberal government to release this information for a different year. By fighting against the public’s right to know, the B.C. Liberal government is wasting time and money. The government should be serving the people of this province, not shielding industry from public scrutiny.

During the spring sitting of the legislature, the New Democrat opposition introduced The Open Government Act to close loopholes in the province’s FOI legislation and prevent the government from waging time-consuming and costly battles against the public’s right to access information.

In 2007, the bi-partisan Special Committee on Sustainable Aquaculture recommended that the salmon farming industry be transitioned to closed-containment within five years. The B.C. Liberal government ignored this and more than 50 other recommendations, including transparent disease reporting, despite ongoing concerns about theimpact of fish farms on wild salmon and other species.

If the B.C. government had implemented the recommendations of the Special Committee on Sustainable Aquaculture, we would be well on our way to showing the world that it is possible to have a thriving aquaculture industry that provides green jobs with a light environmental footprint.

I am fighting for an environmental plan that respects communities, creates green jobs, offers families positive choices and commits to concrete action to protect species at risk.

I call on Minister Thompson to do the right thing: show that you are committed to working transparently and help improve the protections for our desperately vulnerable wild salmon. Listen to the Courts of B.C. and release the documents now!


Lana Popham, MLA Saanich South