Could a Liberal-Green coalition rejuvenate B.C. politics and push fresh approaches to economic development? News Bulletin file photo

Liberal-Green partnership could stir stagnant waters

Liberal-Green coalition possibility offer glimmer of hope for real change in B.C. politics

Is this really happening? Could my dream of a Liberal-Green government coalition actually come true?

I never seriously thought it could happen, but Wednesday morning it was as if darkened clouds in the heavens parted, ever so slightly, and I’m almost certain in my state of half-awaking a beam of celestial light shone down upon my bed and I heard a faint chorus of angels singing, “Chris, awaken, your wish – like that one you have about early retirement – may yet be manifest.”

Who knows what lies ahead?

Yes, I’ll confess, Liberal, sufficiently diluted, is my flavour of Kool-Aid. I’ve never acquired a taste for the orange stuff, but I do have close friends and acquaintances who partake of it, ahem, liberally. There are plenty of issues we agree upon and gaping chasms between our opinions on others, so when discussing politics we’ve learned to just shut up and grab another beer whenever we start sounding stupid to one another.

In any event, while I wasn’t looking for a hardcore Liberal win, the results Tuesday night came as a bit of a surprise.

The good news, to my way of thinking, at least, is B.C. now has a third party with potentially enough weight to skip around the pivot point of B.C.’s political see-saw and maybe tilt the balance of power – and focus of that power – in favour of constituents instead of political party interest, for a change.

And I think the Greens bring fresh thinking to B.C.’s economy and politics.

I like the Liberals because they bring a business plan and I think Christy Clark has made a good attempt at diversifying the province’s economy, but I’m not in favour of more mega projects like the Site C dam. As for pipelines, if I have to move oil, gas, or other potentially dangerous goods, I’ve noticed pipelines tend to crash and spill their cargo far less often than trains and trucks, so I’ll take a pipeline.

I’m also in favour of developing liquefied natural gas resources. The problem with LNG, though, is who will we sell it to? China and India are moving away from fossil fuels by developing their green energy industries on a huge scale. That’s what we should have been doing here and selling our products to those markets, instead of pursuing another fossil fuel resource and delivery system.

I read somewhere it takes about 20 years after a pipeline is built before it becomes profitable to operate – assuming the product it carries increases or at least holds its value. That might not be the case with selling LNG to Asian markets 20 years from now.

The Greens’ way of thinking could bring the idea of developing exportable alternative energy products into mainstream B.C. politics. Combined with Liberal experience in industry development, a Green-Liberal partnership could be the start of something good for B.C.’s long-term economic prospects and if the Greens can push proportional representation that same partnership could revive B.C.’s stagnant political arena, because I really believe more citizens will vote if they know each of their votes stands behind representation more closely aligned with what they believe in.

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