Last week, we reported the Campbell administration's climate action team had its first meeting last week. The team will have until July 31, 2008 to do their work. And it seems they won't have much of an opportunity to get that work done during the time period. According to team member Naomi Devine, she and her colleagues are scheduled to meet just eight times. In an interview on Public Eye Radio, Ms. Devine explained, "We've got a very quick pace that's been set for us and a big challenge that's been set by the premier. But everybody is pretty enthusiastic about meeting it and the conversations we're going to be having over (climate action) options and where we see the province going."
And what options will she be pushing for? "Many of my dream ideas are already on the table or being taken by the government. But the one that really stands out for me is transportation and public transportation specifically. I really would like to see - and within a very short period of time - public transportation become a viable first option for people. And that involves many things. And I think one of the first things I'd like to talk about is advocating for free public transit within a well-designed, sustainable and integrated system. We've advanced the idea at the University of Victoria where students, of course, get a univeral bus pass. And that has greatly increased the amount of ridership among students. And we've proposed the idea of a U-Pass for the whole university. But if you take that idea further, why don't we have that idea as a policy for everyone in British Columbia."
Ms. Devine, 27, also addressed her status as the youngest member of the climate action team, saying "I don't worry about getting steamrolled. It's quite an interesting table of people who bring a tremendous amount of experience and a wide and diverse amount of experience. But the nice thing about being a youth member is that they're often interested in hearing what I have to say about things and the perspective that I bring. And a lot of people turn, because of the very large nature of this challenge, to what younger people have to say about it."