The only way to combat climate change and improve services without raising taxes is to create wealth, says François Legault, who is asking Quebecers to “change their attitude” toward major projects.
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“When I see some people criticizing economic development projects in Quebec without any nuance, it saddens me, and I say to myself today, with this kind of attitude we will not be able to build James Bay,” the Prime Minister said at a press conference. Conference on Thursday in Parliament.
Mr. Legault had summoned reporters to talk about what he himself calls his “obsession”: wealth creation.
His message, delivered in a solemn tone, was very simple: we must stop disdaining big projects if we are to respond to the “grand challenge” of our time: fighting climate change and investing in health and education. Without increasing taxes, due to the difficult economic context.
“There's only one way to do this, and that's to create wealth,” he said, arguing that the government will invest more in education and health in the next budget and that Quebec has “the most stringent environmental standards in North America.”
Without this, the Environment Ministry “would not have allowed the Northvolt plant to be built,” Mr. Legault continued.
Recall that the government has decided that this project will not have to be submitted to BAPE, and that civil society groups are concerned about the effects of building the plant on the environment and the quality of life of residents and citizens living near it.
When a reporter asked him whether opposition to major projects was unique to Quebec, Mr. Legault responded by adopting a tone that was intended to be didactic.
Maybe the connection isn't made, and people don't understand it […] That when we do a project as big as Northvolt, let alone name it […] What does it mean?” he said.
“Having electric cars means, first of all, the parts will come from Quebec. Secondly, instead of pumping oil and then sending our money to the oil companies, we will be able to consume Quebec's electricity.
Mr. Legault even said that the Environment Ministry “would not have allowed the Northvolt plant to be built if we did not have the highest environmental standards.”
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