Stikine MLA Doug Donaldson has been named the provincial NDP’s spokesperson for energy and mines. Party leader John Horgan made the announcement last week, saying Donaldson has been a strong voice for the North since his election to the legislature in 2009.
“He has represented northern and rural B.C. well, and understands the importance of the resource extraction and processing that contributes so much to this province’s economy,” Horgan said in a press release.
Vancouver-Mount Pleasant MLA Melanie Mark will relieve Donaldson from his role as spokesperson for children and family development, a position he held while also serving as deputy spokesperson for energy and mines.
“I’m very happy to be asked to take on the portfolio of opposition spokesperson for energy and mines, and hold the government accountable for the damage they’ve created in public confidence and investor certainty in the industry,” Donaldson told the Interior News.
He accuses the Liberals of failing to hold the mine’s owner, Imperial Metals, accountable to their slow reaction of the Mount Polley tailings pond breach two years ago, sending 24 million cubic metres of waste and water into nearby lakes and rivers. Donaldson believes their response contributed to an erosion of public confidence, affecting project approvals and jobs and economic loss.
“The people I’m hearing from know the economic well being is dependent on environmental well being,” he said.
Donaldson previously served as the opposition spokesperson for aboriginal relations and reconciliation, energy and mines, and has served on the Select Standing Committee on Finance.