Kings South MLA and Environment Minister David Morse. Advertiser file photo
BY BRENT FOX
He’s returning to an Environment Department that’s even busier than when he left.
Kings South MLA David Morse is back as Environment Minister.
Premier Rodney MacDonald shuffled his cabinet last week and gave Morse the Environment portfolio, as well as retaining his responsibilities for Emergency Management and his new one as Minister Responsible for Military Relations.
Morse has three sons serving in the military, one of which is an Afghanistan veteran.
Morse said his first tenure in Environment included the Kyoto discussions with other provinces and the federal government. He has found that the challenge to get people to act on acknowledging and acting upon climate change has begun to have results.
As well, he had been concerned about water availability and quality.
Morse lauded Minister Mark Parent -- who exchanged Environment for Agriculture while continuing his Labour portfolio in the shuffle -- for his efforts in Environment for a number of actions taken in recent years. “I’m so pleaded that under Minster Parent the department pursued a full water strategy, not just doing a drinking water strategy.” As well, there was the Climate Change Action and Energy Strategy.
Morse said, “Minister Parent did a lot.” The province has become one of the greenest in environmental action, including emissions policy. “I’m just pleased to be coming back into this very important department.”
He acknowledged there will continue to be a requirement to balance the needs of the environment and the economy. But, he noted, “we should never lose focus on emissions reductions.”
As well, the province has become a leader in green technology; in fact, exporting that and waste management expertise to other countries.
But he sees people now understand better that climate change is real and that it has dire consequences for aspects of our economy if not addressed. The increasingly warmer winters, for example, are no longer controlling pests that affect our resource industries. “People are catching on,” he said.