B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson at a campaign stop in Campbell River Sept. 29, promoting a one-year elimination of provincial sales tax to help businesses buy equipment. (Campbell River Mirror)

B.C. VOTES 2020: Wilkinson targets pipeline protesters, promises forest stability

B.C. Liberals vow to grow tree planting, legislate ‘working forest’

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson took his campaign to Merritt Friday, promising to stabilize the forest industry with “working forest” guarantees, and vowing to get tough on protests targeting pipeline and other projects that have permits to build.

“We’ll end the NDP’s obstruction for the Trans Mountain pipeline, and we will take the position that permitted projects should not be blocked by protesters,” Wilkinson said at a lumberyard in the B.C. Interior community near Kamloops Oct. 2.

Police have responded multiple times to road and rail blockades targeting the Coastal Gaslink project, opposed by a small group of hereditary Wet’suwet’en chiefs and their supporters across the country. The Wet’suwet’en opponents launched their latest court challenge this week, arguing that permits issued for the gas pipeline across northern B.C. didn’t take into account “gender-based harms” associated with it.

RELATED: Gas pipeline opponents cite ‘gender-based harm’

RELATED: NDP delays log export restrictions due to COVID-19

John Horgan’s NDP government launched its own court challenges against the Trans Mountain oil pipeline, joining cases brought by Indigenous communities in the Lower Mainland and their environmental group backers.

Asked how he would deal with protesters, Wilkinson said the courts are the correct place to oppose projects, and protests that ignore court orders should not be tolerated.

Wilkinson referred to an earlier promise to speed up mining and other resource permits by moving the process online, and continued to promote his two-year cut to the provincial sales tax as a way to help business buy equipment and people to have more money to spend.

On Friday Wilkinson focused on the forest industry, promising to change the current stumpage system for Crown timber so it changes along with the volatile lumber price instead of once or twice a year.

“We need to massively expand tree planting in British Columbia, not only for the benefit of the forest industry, but also to reduce our greenhouse gas production,” Wilkinson said. “We’ll introduce legislation to protect the working forest, because there’s no certainty in the B.C. forest industry these days, and that’s what we need to get ahead.”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC politicsBC Votes 2020

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Photo courtesy of Correctional Service of Canada.
Prisoner convicted of first-degree murder escapes Mission Insitution

When 10 p.m. count was conducted, staff discovered Roderick Muchikekwanape had disappeared

The fall 2020 election polling place at Yale’s community centre. (Emelie Peacock/Hope Standard)
Over 1,300 mail-in ballots received for Fraser-Nicola riding

Counting mail-in votes won’t commence until Nov. 6 in the swing riding

An electrical vehicle charging station on Fort St. across from the Hope Legion appears to have suffered extensive damage. (Emelie Peacock/Hope Standard)
Electric vehicle charging station in Hope vandalized

Cables were cut to all four charging stations at a soon-to-be-opened lot on Fort St.

Kastor Hansen gets the right timing on the double-Dutch ropes, cheered on by principal, Bruce Becker. For the past 10 years, Becker has been Silver Creek Elementary’s principal, he is now moving on to become principal at Coquihalla Elementary School. (Barry Stewart/Hope Standard)
Bruce Becker to be Coquihalla Elementary’s new principal, leaving role at Silver Creek open

Longtime SD78 educators Monique Gratrix and Peter Flynn are retiring

Google Maps screenshot taken at 7:56 a.m., Oct. 29.
TRAFFIC: Westbound Highway 1 crash between Chilliwack and Abbotsford

Left lane is blocked, traffic backed up to No. 3 Road

Sooke’s Paul Larouche, aka PioneerPauly on YouTube, uses a metal detector in hopes to find gold flakes along his claim of the Sooke River. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
VIDEO: Island man finds niche audience by gold-panning on YouTube

Paul Larouche, 29, with over 215,000 subscribers, opens up about his journey

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks Thursday (Oct. 29) during a news conference held at Fraser Health office, in video posted to Facebook. (Photo: Government of British Columbai/Facebook)
COVID-19 ‘disproportionately’ affecting Fraser Health: Henry

Health region has about 75 per cent of B.C.’s active cases

A study by SlotsOnlineCanada notes there is at least 88 hours of top-rated horror movies for Canadians to consume this Halloween. (Unsplash)
Spooks and Chill study reveals Canada’s favourite horror flicks

88 hours of top-rated horror movies can fill COVID-19 Halloween

Burnaby RCMP responded to a dine-and-dash suspect who fell through a ceiling in March 2020. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Suspected dine-and-dasher falls through ceiling of Burnaby restaurant

A woman believed to be dashing on her restaurant bill fell through the kitchen ceiling

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A can of Canada Dry Ginger Ale is shown in Toronto on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020. The maker of Canada Dry Ginger Ale has agreed to pay over $200,000 to settle a class-action lawsuit launched by a B.C. man who alleged he was misled by marketing suggesting the soda had medicinal benefits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Joseph O’Connal
B.C. man’s lawsuit over marketing of Canada Dry ginger ale settled for $200K

Soda’s maker, Canada Dry Mott’s Inc., denied the allegations and any liability

Vancouver Island-based Wilson’s Transportation has expanded to fill some of the routes left unserviced by Greyhound as of Nov. 1, 2018. (Black Press files)
B.C. bus companies say they need help to survive COVID-19

Like airlines, motor coaches have lost most of their revenue

A deer was spotted in October 2020 in Prince Rupert, B.C., with a bright pink yoga ball stuck in its antlers. (Kayla Vickers/Chronicles Of Hammy The Deer Official Page)
Hammy 2.0? Prince Rupert deer spotted with bright pink yoga ball stuck in antlers

The BC Conservation Officer Service is aware of the deer roaming around the city

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Kelowna Mountie hit with 2nd lawsuit in 2 months for alleged assault

Const. Julius Prommer is accused of breaking a woman’s knee during while responding to a noise complaint

Most Read