Sal Spirit Bear shakes up Liberal race, announces he’s running for BC Premier

Feature story - February 9, 2011
(Victoria, B.C.) The lackluster Liberal leadership race was shaken up today with the announcement at the Legislature in Victoria that Sal Spirit Bear, a powerful new political force, is seeking to lead the party and become Premier of British Columbia.

Spirit Bear is running to ensure that the landmark Great Bear Rainforest Agreements are fully implemented to protect his homeland. Progress on the agreements is behind schedule. None of the other Liberal candidates has committed to implementing them. His fear that the Liberals will abandon the Agreements prompted Sal Spirit Bear to emerge from his forest home on the northern coast of BC to lead the Liberal Party to ensure implementation.

“I’m going to take the Liberal Party out of hibernation,” said Sal. “It’s my intention to bear it all to win this leadership contest. A vote for Sal Spirit Bear is a vote for the protection of the Great Bear Rainforest.”

The Agreements, forged after nearly a decade of collaboration among First Nations, environmental groups, the BC government and industry, were signed on March 31, 2009. The deal outlines the steps that must be taken to ensure the protection the scientific community has recommended and to improve well-being in coastal communities.

“British Columbians and all Canadians are proud of the Great Bear Rainforest Agreements and disappointed that the BC Liberal Party and its candidates have said nothing about their promise to protect this magnificent coastal area,” said Eduardo Sousa, Sal Spirit Bear’s campaign manager. “The other candidates have bearly spoken out on environmental issues, and, now, just weeks before the leadership convention, the public hasn’t heard so much as a grunt out of any of the candidates about honouring the promise of the Great Bear Rainforest Agreements.”

If elected Liberal leader and Premier of BC, a Sal Spirit Bear government will move quickly to:

  1. Implement all of the BC government’s commitments to the 2009 Great Bear Rainforest Agreements to achieve healthy communities and healthy ecosystems,
  2. Negotiate sincerely and progressively with First Nations and other coastal communities of the Great Bear Rainforest to keep the promise to ensure social and economic well-being and control over their traditional territories,
  3. Support sustainable forestry in places that don’t comprise healthy ecosystems,
  4. Ban oil tanker traffic from our coastal waters,
  5. Protect wild salmon with a long-term strategy developed by his friends in the environmental community,
  6. Proclaim a province-wide statutory holiday in April: Wild Forests Day.

The United Nations has declared 2011 to be the UN International Year of Forests. Sal Spirit Bear believes there’s no better time to lead the BC government to ensure that 70 per cent of old growth in the Great Bear Rainforest is protected for all time. It is also a critical time to ensure the protection of the habitat of other iconic BC species, including: the northern goshawks, marbled murrelets, coastal tailed frogs, mountain goats, and grizzly bears.

Follow Sal Spirit Bear on the campaign trail:

Campaign site: www.salspiritbear.ca

on Twitter at @salspiritbear

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sal-Spirit-Bear/132351190164245

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