3


POLICY WORKING PAPER #1


Renewing our Commitment to a Sustainable Environment


British Columbia has thousands of miles of ocean coastline, a great inland sea (the Georgia Strait), three great river systems (the Skeena, the Fraser and the Columbia), thousands of lakes and a variety of forested and non-forested eco-systems. Over 90 per cent of BC is Crown land. The stewardship of this land is perhaps the single greatest responsibility of the government -- something that will have an impact on every citizen and every future citizen of the province.


This responsibility cannot be left to any single agency or interest group.


People living in communities in all regions of the province – including people in First Nation communities – are key to sustainable, knowledgeable resource management and need to be actively involved at all decision making levels. And for the same reason that maximum biodiversity tends to be an indicator of healthy eco-systems, we should encourage experimentation, local solutions and decentralized decision making whenever possible.


But always, we need to keep our focus on ends and not means. We need to develop new policies and update old policies to protect our quality of life, which depends fundamentally on our natural environment. How successful we are in accomplishing that task will ultimately be judged only by future generations.


Priority initiatives


Land and water





The marine ecology





The air we breathe and the energy we need





Our urban environment




Environmental fiscal reform







3

Please send comments on the Campaign for Change policy working papers to [email protected] before

November1, 2003