Q&A - Cindy Derkaz

Cindy Derkaz1. Blue Dot Pledge:
Everyone in Canada should have the right to clean air and a safe, healthy environment. In early May, SENS asked all candidates to sign a pledge to uphold this right.

a) Explain why you signed the pledge.

b) Should you NOT be elected, what will you do locally to support everyone’s right to clean air and a safe, healthy environment?

2. Jobs:

a) Multinational industries have a major influence on Canadian health, jobs, and laws. They can, through NAFTA, receive ‘damage’ costs AND pollute our air, soil and waters with impunity if they can show that our environmental laws impact their ability to make money. What will you do about this?

b) There are cases (e.g. Lavington Glass Plant and Nanaimo logging company) where a multinational company buys a Canadian company, then later (possibly having run it into the ground) closes it down to conserve jobs in another country. We lose well-paying jobs. How would you act to prevent this happening in the first place?

c) For similar dollar investments, when 2 jobs are generated in the oil/gas industry, 15 jobs are generated in alternative energy (ref: Solar Living Sourcebook). According to the World Monetary Fund, our current governments pay subsidies of about $34 billion PER YEAR to the oil and gas industry (Tyee, May 15/14). Given the job benefits coming from alternative energy, what are you prepared to do to encourage jobs in alternative energy and to deal with oil and gas industry subsidies?

3. Climate Change:
Climate Change is real and happening around us all the time now. According to the UN, we only have 12 years to act before positive feedback loops create ever increasing wild and unexpected weather and global warming. It has already impacted locals due to health and business loss last year during the fires. 

a) What are you doing now, and what will you do to mitigate this disaster to reduce suffering of locals and other Canadians? 

b) What will you do to ensure that carbon polluters (of air, water, land) will pay? B.C. did better than the rest of the provinces despite introduction of a carbon tax. What are your thoughts? 

c) Many (companies/people) choose not to rethink, refuse, reduce or reuse because action will cost billions…but the cost of NOT dealing with climate change will cost trillions.  What will you do about it? 

4. Pesticides:
The Canada Health Agency has allowed use of Chlorpyrifor pesticide (on many fruits and vegetables) despite scientific evidence showing it can irreversibly impact children’s brain development and hormonal systems. They also still allow use of Roundup. Roundup’s active ingredient glyphosate “may rather be the most important factor in the development of multiple chronic diseases and conditions that have become prevalent in Westernized societies” (Peer Reviewed Scientific Journal “Entropy”). Other supposedly inert ingredients in Roundup have now been proven to be deadly to human cells, particularly embryonic, placental and umbilical cord cells (Scientific American). Forestry in BC uses it heavily to kill all deciduous trees (shown to deter forest fires when part of a mixed pine/fir/cedar forest). Roundup is now in our underground and surface water and our soil.

If elected would you ban Chlorpyrifor and also follow the example of the Netherlands and other countries which have banned Roundup? Explain.

5. Agriculture:
A United Nations report called “Wake up before it's too late” calls for the transformation of agriculture saying we need “a rapid and significant shift from conventional, monoculture-based and high-external-input-dependent industrial production toward mosaics of sustainable, regenerative production systems that also considerably improve the productivity of small-scale farmers”.

If elected would you work to make this change happen in our region and if so, how would you go about transforming our agriculture?

6. Healing Our Forests:

How will your party strike a balance between RESTORING (not just protecting) the ecological integrity of Canada’s forests (especially the massive boreal forest region) and the need for an economically and environmentally sustainable forestry sector?

7. Transportation:
Transportation is one of Canada’s largest greenhouse gas emitters. 

a) Would you do as Norway did (well over $1 trillion US collected so far) and use carbon taxes for social and environmental initiatives (green spending and compensation for those who are disproportionally affected by a CO2 levy)?  Explain.

b) How would you approach the ‘elephant in the room’  - people who travel a lot by air, which greatly increases carbon emissions?