Saturday, November 10, 2012

Campaign Update: Trent Wotherspoon

Trent's Website: LINK

Well, better late than never I suppose; I've found myself a bit short of time recently, so writing this post has taken me a bit longer than usual. My apologies.

On the campaign front, Trent Wotherspoon has released his environmental policy vision. So, as per usual, we'll throw up the basics here and have a bit of  a look at them.

The first plank deals with climate change and green energy. Trent's plan calls for aggressive greenhouse gas reduction targets for the Crowns and the entire province; provide SaskPower with a mandate to become a leader in green energy production (wind, solar, biomass, hydro, etc.); promote energy conservation within government, Crowns, and the province in addition to energy generation; bring in the Nova Scotia's "Feed-in-Tariff" that allows non-profits, schools, municipalities, First Nations, and other groups to sell electricity from renewable sources to SaskPower; Establish a Secretariat of Energy Efficiency with offices at the U of R and U of S to coordinate and promote energy consumption; and ensure rigorous monitoring of land, air, and water in Saskatchewan with public reporting.

The second plank revolves around conservation. Trent's plan calls for provincial leadership in running the Prairie Shelterbelt Program, and try to foster a cooperation with Manitoba and Alberta to do so; create a program that allows the province to assume ownership of community pastures abandoned by the federal government; increase the number of wildlife habitats and ecological preserves, and bring lands back into protection under the Wildlife Habitation Protection Act; create a fund dedicated to increasing local food production and urban agriculture, expand organic farming and promote sustainable agricultural practices and techniques.

The third plank revolves around water and infrastructure. Trent's plan calls for a province wide water study to assess water quality and quantity, enforces drinking water standards, recognizing water as a human right, regional water planning, rigorous monitoring, and declaring surface and ground water as a public trust; finally, the creation of a municipal infrastructure strategy that focuses on providing stable and predictable funding to things such as recycling programs, bike paths, public transit, roads, bridges, and wastewater facilities. The money would be prioritized and spent equally across the province.

Of the major ideas, I think the bringing of the 'Feed-In-Tariff' is the one that sticks out the most. It's yet another one of those big ideas that should generate a lot of interest, and it's those kinds of big ideas that Trent's campaign has put out fairly well thus far.

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