PEI

MLAs vote in favour of stronger emissions targets for P.E.I. following rally

A private member's bill to set a more ambitious reduction target for P.E.I.'s carbon emissions passed second reading in the provincial legislature Tuesday night.  

Private member's bill from Green MLA Lynne Lund passes second reading

A crowd shows support for Lynne Lund's amendment to P.E.I.'s Climate Leadership Act prior to the vote. (Kerry Campbell/CBC)

A private member's bill to set a more ambitious reduction target for P.E.I.'s carbon emissions passed second reading in the provincial legislature Tuesday night.  

The bill, sponsored by Green MLA Lynne Lund, has been one of the most debated topics of this sitting of the legislature.

It would change the province's carbon emissions targets for the year 2030 — from the current target of 1.4 megatonnes of carbon per year to 1.2 megatonnes.

The vote was expected to be close, but in the end passed with 18 votes in favour, and just six against.

It was supported by all Green and Liberal MLAs, and four of the 10 PC MLAs present for the vote. Premier Dennis King was absent. 

Environment minister votes in favour

PC MLAs Cory Deagle, Darlene Compton, James Aylward, Steven Myers, Jamie Fox and Ernie Hudson voted against the bill.

Minister of Environment, Water and Climate Change Brad Trivers had previously said he likely would not support the bill without it going to a standing committee. However, he said he had changed his mind. 

Prior to the vote, he told a group rallying outside the legislature that his decision came in part out of conversations with his children.

This sign supports P.E.I. changing its emissions target by 2030. (Sarah MacMillan/CBC)

About 100 people gathered outside the P.E.I. legislature to put pressure on MLAs to support the bill — and many cheered as Trivers, as well as Liberal Leader Robert Mitchell indicated they would vote in favour. 

The bill will still have to pass third reading before it becomes law. 

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About the Author

Sarah MacMillan is a journalist with CBC P.E.I. You can contact her at sarah.macmillan@cbc.ca

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