Montreal·Video

Elizabeth May says federal election is 'referendum on climate change'

If Quebec and the rest of Canada wants to see change, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said voters need to elect a party that is up to the challenge and ready with a concrete plan to reduce emissions and create jobs in the growing green economy. 

Voters must elect party willing to take necessary steps to reduce emissions, says Green Party leader

Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada, appeared on CBC Montreal's Daybreak Friday before heading to Montreal's climate change march. (Isaac Olson/CBC)

As hundreds of thousands of protesters prepared to march in Montreal and around the world, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said she is inspired by today's youth and the growing climate change movement.

She and all Green Party candidates are part of that movement, she told CBC Montreal's Daybreak Friday.

If Quebec and the rest of Canada wants to see change, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said voters need to elect a party that is up to the challenge and ready with a concrete plan to reduce emissions and create jobs in the growing green economy.

May said after decades of working on the climate crisis, it angers her to see carbon emissions have increased since the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was signed by global leaders in 1992.

"We want to ensure that in this election, which I think is really a referendum on climate change, voters recognize that, if you really want to see a green policy, you've got to vote for a party that is really going to hold the line and ensure that we don't go above 1.5 degrees Celsius," she said.

The Liberal Party of Canada may want to achieve carbon neutrality, but the party isn't presenting a plan on how to get there, May said.

"Our plan is called Mission Possible," she said.  "We have to start by doubling the current target."

Canada's aim to reduce emissions by the 30 per cent between 2005 and 2030 isn't good enough, she said. The Greens want to shoot for a 60 per cent reduction by investing in electrical infrastructure — ensuring the grid connects provinces and is 100 per cent renewable.

"Quebec is going to play a big role in that," she said.

May said she wants to reduce dependence on oil while creating jobs in the green sector.

"This is an approach that requires, as we say, all hands on deck. This is not status quo decision making. This is to say, we're facing an existential threat to the survival of human civilization."

Listen to Elizabeth May explain the Green Party's federal election campaign platform: 

Federal Election 2019: Interview with Elizabeth May 17:13

With files from CBC Montreal's Daybreak

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