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04 October 2007

The 4 Key Issues for the Ontario Green Party

Stop Climate Change

Achieve at least a 6% reduction in emissions below 1990 levels by 2010 to help meet Canada’s Kyoto obligations and 80% by 2050.

Energy Self-sufficiency

The GPO’s target for 2020 is to reduce our peak energy usage by 50% per capita or lower it to 60% of projected consumption.

Better Education

Merging the Roman Catholic and public school boards to eliminate duplication, save $500 million and improve quality of education.

Local Sustainability

Work where we live, buy local goods, and support public transit and low impact solutions to strengthen communities.

03 October 2007

Meeting our Green Obligations

Frank de Jong, Leader of the Green Party of Ontario, in the Green Party of Ontario Platform 2007 writes:

In a green and sustainable Ontario, the interdependent health of society, environment and economy is our measure of success.

Growth is balanced with the imperative of finite resources. Ontario is more than a source of profits; it belongs to the people of this province. This is our home. It is where we live, work and raise families.

The Green Party of Ontario believes that social, economic and environmental policy should:

  • create a green and sustainable living for the people of Ontario

  • contribute to the planet's greater good

  • establish the foundation for a green and sustainable future.

Our platform seeks to do so not by spending more money, but by shifting priorities to achieve sustainable results.

The need to do so is urgent. The time to act is now.

When other parties say that it's time for change, they mean that it's their turn to be in power and do what they usually do.

Ontario is where it is today because the mainstream parties are more interested in power than in responsibility.

When the Green Party says it is time for change, we mean that it is time for this province to change fundamentally
the way it does business.

We support the right of all taxpayers to get all the information about an issue, to be involved in its resolution
through citizens' assemblies, to receive incentives for doing the right thing and to know when they're doing the wrong thing.

Is this about power? In a way, yes. It is about people having the power to take responsibility for our province's

It's time to get real. It's time to put Green Party representatives in the legislature to speak for you about true change and responsibility.

25 September 2007

Green Party Platform on Education

The Ontario Green Party believes in a single publicly funded education system that treats all students fairly and equally and is relevant within the context of the local community.

The UN Human Rights Committee has censured Ontario twice (in 1999 and again in 2005) for violating the equality of its own citizens by funding Roman Catholic schools but not schools of other religions. The UN advocated accommodating religious diversity within a single publicly funded system.

The Green Party would:

  • End funding for religious education in Ontario.

  • Address problems with the funding formula by giving local school boards a say in how funds are to be spent.

  • Introduce a mandatory world religion course in all grades to promote tolerance, understanding and respect for every student in publicly funded schools.

  • Increase environmental education.

  • End standardized testing.

  • Immediately address the $700-per-student funding gap between elementary and secondary students.

  • Increase physical education and nutrition programs and make physical education courses mandatory in secondary school.

  • Extend loans to schools to finance the construction of renewable energy installations.

  • Introduce legislation to abolish the College of Teachers.

  • Provide $500 million per year by 2011 to cap university tuition at $3000 average per year and college tuition at $700.

  • Re-regulate currently unregulated undergraduate university programs.

  • Improve apprentice opportunities for skilled trades, agriculture and artisans.

  • Reinvest interest earned on student loans in grants to students in fi nancial need and qualified foreign students.

More from the Green Party on Education

23 September 2007

Green Party on Democratic Renewal

The Ontario Green Party would:

  • Implement mixed member proportional representation (MMP) if passed by a 50% majority. Introduce legislation requiring a simple majority of voters to win a referendum.

  • Lower the voting age from 18 to 16 years and increase electoral education in our schools.

  • Introduce legislation to create a taxpayer-supported system that funds political parties in proportion to the popular vote they attained in the previous provincial election, and paid to them at the rate of $1.75 per year per vote obtained.

  • Eliminate the $200 deposit required to run for elected office.

  • Establish a statutory holiday on polling days for provincial and municipal elections to encourage voter participation.

  • Ban contributions by corporations and trade unions to provincial political parties or to individuals seeking election at the municipal or regional levels. The GPO believes it is time for corporate and union funding of political parties to end.

  • Eliminate the carry-over of municipal campaign funds from one election campaign to the next.

More from the Green Party on Democratic Renewal

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09 March 2007

Anita Payne on Health

Anita Payne, Green Party candidate for the October 2007 Ontario election, believes much more attention should be spent on disease prevention. She would like to see pop machines and junk food banned from all Ontario schools with more emphasis on lifestyle physical activities. Parents should be discouraged from driving their children to school. It is harmful for both the children and the environment. Many children raised in urban environments are disconnected from the natural environment. Many have no idea where their food, water and oxygen come from. Every student should have outdoor education experiences every year from kindergarten to grade 12 in both the natural and agricultural environments. Also the Ministry of Education should be fully prescribed under the Ontario Environmental Bill of Rights. This would give anyone the right to challenge curricula that inadequately incorporates environmental education. Every person in Ontario should understand that we have to live in balance with the natural environment that nurtures us.

01 March 2007

St Marys Farmer Denies Global Warming

St Marys area farmer Garnet Bloomfield wrote a letter to the editor last week. While Stephen Harper and George Bush have come around to accept that Global Warming is actually happening, Mr. Bloomfield is still denying it. The one point Mr. Bloomfield makes that everyone can agree on is how cynical Liberals are being.

Garnet Bloomfield’s letter says:

As a farmer, I am well aware of the need to be on the right side of Mother Nature but some of these changes that are happening in our environment could well be in the most part a phenomenon of nature itself. No doubt the people of North Africa in bygone times blamed someone for the loss of their status of being the bread basket of the then known world and over time it became the Sahara desert. They were not aware of the change of climatic weathers as related to the wind and rain patterns as we are today.

It was not that many years back (maybe 20 to 25 years) that this same group of experts were warning us of the return of another ice age. It would seem that the new Liberal leader is well aware of the axiom of leadership is the art of jumping out front when the mob is running by.

I would sincerely hope that cool heads prevail in Ottawa and not waste billions of dollars in what could be a natural change in nature and not be led astray by the latest craze of the tree huggers. Our elected people should hear both sides of the story before leaping into a dry pool.

I really don't want to return to the horse and buggy days and living in a cave as some would have us needlessly do.

It’s hard to see how the Green Economics returns us to the horse and buggy days and living in a cave.

28 February 2007

Anita Payne on the Economy

Anita Payne, the Green Party nominee in Perth-Wellington for the upcoming provincial election has said that a healthy economy is based on a healthy environment. This is especially true in agriculture. Ms. Payne believes that agriculture should continue to work towards the significant reduction in reliance on pesticides and commercial fertilizers through the utilization of integrated pest management and nutrient management planning. The long term viability of the family farm is important for the sustainability of the rural economy. Everyone should be encouraged to eat food that is locally produced.

Green tax shifting would take taxes off incomes and businesses and put them on to resources, land and polluters. An example would be a carbon tax which would be a tax based on the amount of carbon dioxide produced to make and deliver a product. Energy conservation is a huge priority as well as continued development of renewable energy sources. Both will help tackle the climate change crisis.

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