PICTOU — An overflow crowd of well over 100 people jammed the Northumberland Fisheries Museum last Saturday to hear from federal Green Party leader Elizabeth May, who repeated her long-held view that no pipe should flow into the Northumberland Strait to discharge waste water from Northern Pulp.
The gathering included the current Central Nova Green Party group, supporters from her past campaign in Central Nova in 2008 and a number of federal Green Party challengers in Nova Scotia ridings, as well as residents of the Pictou Landing First Nation, Friends of the Northumberland Strait and the Save our Seas and Shore that seeks to preserve the fishing habitat in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
May met with a number of people that included Chief Andrea Paul from the Pictou Landing First Nation prior to her address.
“She’s brilliant,” Paul said. “The meeting was very helpful. It’s great to have someone of her calibre on our side.”
May quickly connected with her audience by alluding to her roots in Cape Breton on Canada’s east coast while representing a riding on the west coast and suggesting one or more Green Party candidates could join her in Parliament.
“I am bi-coastal,” she said. “I’m really tired of being in Parliament on my own.”
May said she and whoever else from the Greens is elected during the coming general election next fall will be knowledgeable of issues and act accordingly and not submit to whipped votes on behalf of their party.
“We will emphasize being fully engaged — I think that’s the one thing we can offer.” she said. “I think we’ll go back to Parliament with a good group.”
May said it’s time to close Boat Harbour on schedule and she excoriated the Nova Scotia environment department’s record over Northern Pulp’s 50-year operation and included repealing the Small Tree Act to increase the mill’s pulp supply so that Nova Scotia was transformed from saw mill forests to pulp mill forests.
She called for bringing back the saw mill industry and value-added wood production.
“Enough is enough,” she said. “The Nova Scotia Department of the Environment has been one of the worst polluters all this time.”
Federal Green Party leader Elizabeth May addresses the gathering at the Northumberland Fisheries Museum. (Goodwin photo)