Skip to content

Commentary: An opportunity to build environmental leadership in the Banff-Airdrie riding

Banff-Airdrie’s participation in 100 Debates for the Environment will encourage a race to the top on environmental policy issues in all major parties, demonstrating the strong support that exists for environmental action, and enabling the best policy ideas to come forward to compete for that support.

Around the world, we are seeing dramatic shifts in technology and human behaviour that are helping to address environmental problems.

Here in the Bow Valley and neighbouring communities we are playing our part by creating and preserving space for wildlife, providing solar incentives, growing/buying local food, choosing to take transit or to bike to work, reusing, recycling and more.

But while individual action can make an important contribution to addressing problems like climate change, complex environmental challenges can’t be solved without government leadership.

That’s why on Oct. 3, Canmore Commons, in partnership with the Bow Valley Naturalists and Bow Valley Climate Action, is organizing a non-partisan Banff-Airdrie all-candidates debate on the environment.

It is part of an effort in over 100 ridings across the country to host debates where we can specifically ask our candidates to put their best environmental policy ideas forward.  

Public polling consistently shows support for environmental leadership has never been higher, but this kind of support doesn’t always translate into action from our elected leaders.

The debate on Oct. 3, two weeks before the federal election, will put candidates face-to-face with the people in their ridings who want bold, urgent action on the environment.  

MPs often recall issues and questions that arise at all-candidates debates, even years after their election. This in turn can drive government decision-making and mandates post-election.

Debates are consistently considered potential turning points, and the importance of these events is evident in the significant amount of time that campaigns spend to prepare for them.

Banff-Airdrie’s participation in 100 Debates for the Environment will encourage a race to the top on environmental policy issues in all major parties, demonstrating the strong support that exists for environmental action, and enabling the best policy ideas to come forward to compete for that support.

It is a unique and powerful opportunity for each of us to shine a spotlight on the need for environmental leadership in the next Parliament.  

The Banff-Airdrie candidates debate will take place at Town of Canmore Council Chambers (902 Seventh Ave.) in Canmore from 7-9 p.m. on Oct. 3. This debate is part of 100 Debates on the Environment that will take place that day across Canada.