Treaty 1 Territory, Homeland of the Red River Métis, Winnipeg MB -
Dougald Lamont and the Manitoba Liberal Party announced the first environmental planks of their 2023 election platform today including creating a new $300-million Green Fund to help Manitobans create new green jobs, reduce energy costs, and fight climate change through rewilding. “Rewilding” means restoring ecosystems to their original state, restoring natural forests, grasslands, lakes rivers and wetlands, while linking them together in ecological corridors to encourage the wildlife to recover.
“To make a difference in climate change, we need to make it easier for Manitobans to contribute and do the right thing,” said Dougald Lamont, Manitoba Liberal Party Leader and MLA for St. Boniface. “Manitoba Liberals have a plan to invest in wilderness and electrification so we can all start paying back our climate debt and leave a better province and planet to future generations.”
To grow a greener Manitoba, a Manitoba Liberal Government will create a $300-million Green Fund that will support Manitobans in extensive rewilding programs offering energy-saving retrofits and fighting climate change.
The fund will be administered by Efficiency Manitoba with funding contributions from Manitoba Hydro. Manitoba Liberals will also renegotiate a deal with the Federal Government to redirect a portion of the revenue from the pollution pricing plan.
Eligible projects under the Green Fund will include:
Funding for rewilding and the creation of wilderness/ecological corridors with restored natural forests, wetlands and wildlife habitat
Working with producers to reduce high-intensity GhG efficiency programs to reduce the impact of agricultural greenhouse emissions, such as Nitrous Oxide (NO2)
Lowering energy costs with new green building codes for new builds and retrofits
Residential and commercial green retrofits to reduce home energy costs including to remove radon and replace lead water pipes
New electric charging infrastructure
Manitoba Liberals are also promising to repurpose land back to its native landscape by protecting wilderness with a focus on ecological corridors. Manitoba Liberals have already introduced a bill in the Manitoba Legislature that would allow wildlife to recover as they connect larger territories for species to roam, breed, and grow. “We will work with farmers, Indigenous communities and municipalities to create wilderness corridors and restore habitats such as forests, wetlands, grasslands,” said Dr. Jon Gerrard, Manitoba Liberal Environment Critic and MLA for River Heights. “This will include significant efforts to remove invasive species.”
A Manitoba Liberal Government will work with First Nations, municipalities, farmers, and other stakeholders to increase the amount of protected areas in Manitoba to 30% by 2030.
Manitoba Liberals are committing to becoming the first province in the country to reach net-zero in GHG emissions by 2034, with more environmental announcements to follow in the coming weeks.