MARK DE BRUIJN
Green Party Candidate for
North Island—Powell River

North Island—Powell River: This is our home. This is our future.

 

Mark de Bruijn has loved living in our riding for the past 22 years. He wants to see our communities and our environment thrive. But he's looking at our future, and what he sees deeply concerns him.


He knows it's time for real change. Mark has had a lifelong passion for green politics, and has been a long-time supporter of politically and environmentally focused groups like the Georgia Strait Alliance, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and West Coast Environmental Law. In 2019, he hopes you vote from a place of hope and courage, and vote for a sustainable future.

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When elected, Mark will work hard to:

  • Reverse the climate crisis by investing in green energy infrastructure, sustainable jobs and innovative technology. 

  • Create good, local jobs by introducing policies that encourage entrepreneurs to grow in their own communities and invest in skills training and sustainable practices

  • Fix the housing crisis and end poverty by advocating for a national housing first strategy that gets those in need off the streets and into safe and secure homes.

  • Defend our oceans by passing comprehensive conservation legislation, eliminating single-use plastics and preventing the expansion of coastal pipelines.

  • Protect our forests by introducing strict protections for old-growth forests and introducing new best practices for the forestry industry.

Mark de Bruijn is gathering support from people of all political stripes, and with momentum on his side it's looking very good for a Green win here in North Island—Powell River.

Why I‘m Voting Green in 2019

Today is Thanksgiving Day, and it seems the ideal day to go to my local polling station and cast my ballot. There is so much to be thankful for as a Canadian, and what more perfect way to express it?

In the past few days I’ve been thinking again about why I am running as a candidate for the Green Party, and especially why I think a vote for the Greens is the best choice to make this time.

I have voted for the Greens myself many times in the past. But over the years I’ve also voted NDP and Liberal. How I decided was often different from election to election, but two things usually dominated my decision: who was the best candidate running in my riding, and what did the parties, and their leaders, stand for?

Since the last election in 2015 times have changed dramatically. We no longer have a right- wing Prime Minister dismantling Canada’s environmental and social fabric, so there’s no need to vote strategically to get him out. And the biggest change of all is that now we know that we’re in a climate emergency, and have a very brief few years to act quickly, with courage and determination to prevent things from becoming truly horrendous.

So this time, the same two questions are both guiding my choice in voting. Which candidate has the best vision for my local riding, and at the same time belongs to a party with the strongest vision, plan, and will to deal effectively with the climate crisis before us, and the best leader?

Since I am the Green candidate, these questions may seem rhetorical, and my answer to the first could be seen as self-serving. Those who know me, and those whom I’ve had the privilege of meeting on the campaign trail know why I consider myself the best person for the job of MP for NIPR at this time in our history.

But if I wasn’t a candidate and merely an average voter like I’ve been in every election till now, I would still come to the same conclusion: hands down, this time I’m voting Green.

So here’s why.


 

The Green Party

The Green Party platform for this election is not a platform in the traditional sense; like the BC Greens’ platform in the 2017 provincial election, it is presented as a blueprint for 2030 and beyond:

This is our platform. It is not a conventional set of political promises. It represents a vision for Canada in 2030, which has been sorely missing in public discourse. Our platform commitments represent the types of policy changes needed to make this vision a reality.

Why 2030?

The world’s climate scientists say that by 2030 we must be halfway towards the goal of virtually eliminating climate-changing pollution – primarily carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide – by 2050. If we miss the 2030 target, we risk triggering runaway global warming.

2030 is also the deadline for the reaching the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. These are a set of 17 goals designed to lift people out of poverty, provide everyone with clean water and air, food security and education, and ensure a livable climate. Canada is committed to these goals, but has no plan to get there. The Green Party endorses these goals and has a plan. Throughout the platform, you will see icons beside those policies that align with the 17 SDGs.

The climate emergency must be the lens through which every policy envelope is viewed – the economy, health, education, foreign affairs, immigration, public safety, defence, social welfare, transportation.

 

This approach aligns with my own affinity for systems thinking, for an ecological mindset, for seeing problems not in isolation but as interrelated.

 

In this election, I’m left with the sense that the other parties’ prescriptions are out of step with the challenges ahead of us. One (white) denies the climate challenge even exists, one (blue) acknowledges it but doesn’t see the necessity to do anything about it.

A third (red) agrees with idea of a climate emergency but focuses just as much on status quo economic growth. And the fourth (orange) also says there’s an emergency, but has a weak plan for dealing with it and is mostly concerned with transforming our economic system to put more wealth back into the hands of our communities. And with this I agree.

But I’ve come to see concentration of wealth not as the cause of what ails us, but as a symptom of it. The NDP’s economic platform could, for most intents and purposes, have been the party’s economic platform in 1979, 1989 and 1999. I think 2019 calls for a broader, ecological view that looks more deeply at the interconnections of work, the economy, the climate, and social justice.
 

Elizabeth May

By almost any measure, Elizabeth May is the preeminent leader of a federal party in Canada right now. She is an experienced parliamentarian, intelligent, deeply thoughtful, an excellent communicator, an inspiring leader. I’ve had the pleasure of hearing her speak many times in the last 12 months, and seen her maintain a calm, clear-headed and respectful presence in the rancorous leaders debates – as well as on CPAC in Parliament. Her integrity is steadfast.

I am passionate about many issues, none more so than the need to address the climate crisis, and there is no doubt that, of the federal leaders, May is the one with the deepest understanding of the science, the implications, and the need to adapt how we live and behave. She comes by this honestly, from a lifetime of concern for and action on the environment and social justice.

So, in this climate crisis, I want Elizabeth May at the centre of Canada’s response, whether in government or opposition. That’s why I’m running to join her in Parliament. That’s why I’m voting Green.


 

Mark de Bruijn

Candidate for the Green Party of Canada

North Island-Powell River

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