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Below the Radar Transcript

The Future of Canadian Climate Policy — with Marc Lee

Speakers: Paige Smith, Am Johal, Marc Lee

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Paige Smith 0:03
Hello, I'm Paige Smith with Below the Radar, a knowledge democracy podcast. Below the Radar is recorded on the territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. You're listening to Climate Justice & Inequality, a Below the Radar series looking to highlight the systematic forces that try to undermine climate justice movements, while forging towards a greener and more equitable world.
This week, we hear from Mark Lee, a senior economist from the Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives, and the Co-Director of the Climate Justice Project. Mark discusses the successes and failures of Canadian climate policies across the political spectrum, and conceptualizes how reaching a net-zero carbon economy can be achieved.

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Am Johal  0:53
Hi there, welcome to Below the Radar. Delighted that you could join us again this week. This week we have a special guest, Marc Lee from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, BC office. So welcome, Marc. 

Marc Lee  1:05
Hi, thanks for having me on. 

Am Johal  1:07
Yeah, Marc, maybe we can begin. Why don't you introduce yourself a little bit?

Marc Lee  1:12
Yeah, so my name is Marc Lee. I'm a senior economist with the BC Office of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. I've been there for — jeez, almost 23 years now. It was a very small organization when I started, and it's grown to become fairly big. And over my time there as an economist, I've looked at a whole bunch of public policy issues from, you know, budgets and taxation, and public spending on different things, like health care and education. But most of the last like 13 or 14 years I've spent looking at climate justice. We got a major grant from SSHRC, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, back in 2009, to look at this idea of climate justice. Back then we kind of liked the idea and the term climate justice, but it wasn't really well defined, at least not in a provincial or sub-national context. It was much more around just the core idea, about who's responsible for climate change, and who pays the price. And mostly framed in terms of rich countries and poor countries, you know, back then the framework being the Kyoto Protocol, which treated those, those different countries in different ways. So we sought to advance a climate justice agenda in BC, at the time, Gordon Campbell was premier. And if people can remember that far back in 2007, he came back from his Hawaiian vacation, and then launched with the 2007 throne speech into a whole of government exercise around climate action, in BC. So we were able to play a part of that, and do some commentary. But even for early on, we recognize that this was a very right-wing government — whose track record up to that point of time had been cutting public services, cutting regulations by a third, you know, posing massive austerity in order to pay for tax cuts. Not really showing a whole lot of interest or concern about the plight of the poorest British Columbians. So we were concerned that at that time, a rush to climate action, may have noble environmental goals, or it may be just politics as usual, in a very cunning ploy to steal some votes. But nonetheless, even if it was serious, we were concerned that in that rush, [it] could really have negative impacts for low-income households, or renters, or seniors. Or, you know, the fact that different people have different circumstances. And we needed a policy to be really more tailored and customized to that. So that was basically the origins of the Climate Justice Project. And over the, what, five years became seven years. And we did a whole bunch of stuff that was kind of visionary and looking forward in different areas about what a climate justice approach would look like, and transportation, or buildings and green jobs. And then we also, as the BC government shifted away from an interest in climate action towards LNG and pipelines and more of a fossil fuel agenda. Then we also did some of the work critiquing the economics of the claims that were being made first, especially for things like LNG, or these really bloated claims around employment, and the economy, and government revenue. So — did a little bit of offence and a little bit of defense. But I think in its totality, that Climate Justice Project was a really visionary work. We partnered with academics, environmental NGOs, labour unions, other researchers have all different stripes, in order to fill this empty container of climate justice and talk about what it meant in BC, and the kind of visionary forward-looking work about what getting to a zero carbon economy looks like — I think is some of the work that I'm most proud of in my career at CCPA. And I think a lot of those ideas are now seated in the discussions that you see coming out of the academic and environmental sector. So in some sense, we were ahead of our time. And now with the latest IPCC report, and heat domes and wildfires, and droughts and floods, and all of the stuff we see routinely in the media. We’re able to draw on that base of research towards articulating positive policies, and pushing the BC and federal governments to do way more than they currently are.

Am Johal  5:28
Twenty-three years at the CCPA — you're entering Seth Klein territory almost here. In terms of that particular project, what are the outcomes from that research project that you reflect on now that are the most relevant in thinking through the present situation?

Marc Lee 5:47
Yeah that's a really good question. I think a lot of it really comes down to that core idea of ‘who is responsible? Who is causing climate change? Who's benefiting from fossil fuels?’ And then who's paying the price? Often, it's the folks who haven't benefited from driving vast distances, or flying on planes, or a lot of the consumption that we see, particularly at the high end. And I feel like some of those things became really acute for all of us, during the heat dome event, at the end of June, early July. Where all of a sudden, things that we’ve taken for granted, you know, we lived in a fairly cool climate and never got too hot in summer — it's sort of thrown out the window, and people were kind of thrown into survival mode. And as we know five to 600 people, excess deaths, occurred during that particular heat dome. And, and I was struck by the fact that one of my responses, in the worst of it, was — even though we've been working at home, for over a year due to COVID, I was able to go into the office, and I worked a couple days in the air-conditioned comfort. And once you get back into the office, and you have air conditioning, it's a different world, you can focus on all the little problems that you're working, and kind of go along as if it wasn’t a really big deal. And then when you did go outside, it was like an adventure, you're like, ‘oh, well, let's go see how the heat is now,’ and think about it, but it really changes your orientation. And made me realize how access to cooling or in the wintertime, access to heating, are really like fundamental issues of human rights. And, we need to be rethinking about the systems we have in place. And obviously, the heat dome showed that we didn't have very good systems in place for outreach to seniors, for example, who are living in accommodations that were poorly vented, or were particularly vulnerable to the heat in that dome. Even though we knew it was coming like many days in advance, we just simply didn't have the wherewithal to put those protections in place. So who's responsible? Who pays the price? It's something that we're seeing all around, it's very random. It's no longer impacts that are happening in the global south or far-flung places, or that we think are going to happen, many decades into the future — they're kind of here and now concerns. And a wildfire could come along and burn down your town, that's the world we live in. Or a flood to come and wipe away your house, or your farm, or landslide, all of these things. So, the idea that there's inequality in our society, and those inequalities are vast and extreme, is kind of the second inconvenient truth that we were flagging back in the early days of the Climate Justice Project. And I think if we don't have policies that are broadly inclusive, then we list we risk losing public support. And too much I think that debate in sort of the economic side of it, and the policy side tends to be around a more technological approach — which is we just replace all of the engines and boilers and stuff — they're using fossil fuels with ones that are based on clean electricity and renewables. And in a sense, this takes as a given the fact that in this future world it's okay if billionaires are flying around in hydrogen-powered jets instead of fossil fuel-powered jets, or that we still have sweatshops, but they're solar-powered. So I think, you know, we want to get serious on climate, but it's also around what kind of world do we want to live in? What kind of world are we trying to save? What version of humanity is worth saving? And so it's really fundamental and speaks to the idea of systems change, not just more incremental changes in the margin. And so in the climate justice project, we kind of dug into all of those things in terms of food, and thinking about access to food, and hunger, and nutrition, and how are some of those interlocking issues, all connected within the climate justice framework. When we think about electricity use or energy use in the household, we're also thinking about the idea of energy poverty, the fact that a lot of low-income households are disproportionately burdened in terms of the price they pay for electricity. In transportation recognizing that for a few decades now, we've been putting new rental apartments or new multi-unit buildings — even if they're condos, on major arterial streets, exposing the people who live there to noise and pollution, while the people who tend to be driving those cars live in the quiet and less polluted, leafy neighbourhoods of the city. So you know, how do we open those kind of things up? And then also, just in terms of thinking about the transition we need? Like, where are the jobs? How do we reckon with the fact that through no fault of their own, there are lots of workers who do work in jobs that are contributing to the problem, and we can't just throw them under the bus, as it were, as we shift towards a zero-carbon economy. We need to be mindful about those impacts and try to design policies that are fair, and that bring everyone along together.

Am Johal  11:11
Yeah, you know, the climate change oftentimes was talked about in the media or at a cultural level as this abstract problem in the future, and as many climate activists and others would argue — that it was that the emergency is now. And certainly with the recent events, in Lytton, and in other parts of the world, we're certainly seeing something that's right in front of us. And with the IPCC report, the most recent one of a number of them — and there's two more coming out by next year — that the gravity of the problem is certainly in our face, and the work needs to be done in the present. I’m wondering, Marc, when you look at, say, the pandemic situation, where an emergency is called, and state resources are put into motion with restrictions and policies that are quite immediate. It does for the first time in our lifetimes — seeing the state being mobilized in a way that it hasn't been for a long time, be it war or a previous pandemic, let's say. And I'm wondering from sort of climate emergency point of view, what can you read into the pandemic response that could be both a site of possibility and perhaps problematic about the possibility of the state intervening more forcefully as the situation calls for it? This is certainly, for most people working in climate justice work, their governments and the state are representatives of the people, and they’re the site of doing the most amount of work in terms of regulating industry, carbon emissions, but also other incentive-based models. And I’m wondering, what can you read into — or lessons that could possibly be read into from the pandemic context?

Marc Lee  13:13
Yeah, it's a great question. And certainly, there's a lot of overlap between how we think about climate action, and how we think about, and how we did respond with COVID. I mean the main one is simply that there is a strong role for the public sector, and that some of these things simply can't be done on an individual basis, you know, in a kind of more marketized framework. We went through several decades, where that was just the dominant framework for how we were supposed to organize society. So not you, and I, of course, but in terms of the mainstream and politics, even with the kind of more left-wing parties have kind of largely bought into that idea. And it was never correct. But in the face of like grand crises, that necessitate mobilization of resources, it's even less appropriate. So, yeah, I think the idea that we mobilize through the public sector, that climate change is a collective action problem. So we can't get there if it's left up to individuals just making their own green choices in the marketplace. That's certainly insufficient. It doesn't address the fact that some people live in areas that are relying on a car, that requires some more fundamental structural change in order for them to live more green lifestyles. It's not just urban folks who are more readily able to walk or bike to the places that they need, where they work, or they access public services or other amenities. So we need public sector action to solve the collective action problem, and we need it at multiple levels. So we need the municipal government working, we need the provincial government working — where a lot of the decision-making authority rests — and we need the federal government working in concert. And that all kind of plays into this global situation, at the international level, where everyone needs to do their part. And rich countries like Canada, or rich provinces like British Columbia, who have benefited so much from using fossil fuels, and have very high standards of living and accumulated wealth — owe a disproportionate burden to carry in terms of making really rapid emission reduction cuts as quickly as possible. And the targets that we put on the table, to date, have been largely around kicking the can down the road. They don't really reflect the urgency of the times, and even if they've made declarations of climate emergency, it's really hard to see what the emergency is — particularly when you compare it to COVID, where essentially we rewrote the social safety net in the matter of a few weeks. We knew we had to shut down the transmission of the virus, which meant shutting down most social and economic activity. And as a result, large numbers of people had reduced hours or lost work entirely. So in the face of that, the Unemployment Insurance system which had been whittled away over a few decades to a shell of what it was, back in the 70s and the 80s, needed to be rethought. Because it was no longer appropriate, the criteria by which you were able to access that simply didn't apply for people who'd lost their jobs due to COVID. So the governments to their credit stepped in, this is largely the federal government stepping in, with the CERB, the emergency benefit, and the emergency wage subsidy, among other items. And I think BC among the provinces, stepped in as well, topping up those with its own smaller benefits with the Temporary Renters Supplement, and a variety of other actions. Which in their totality helped us get through that early shutdown period, as we were waiting for vaccines to come about. Obviously, we're still not out of the woods on COVID. And when you look at the numbers today, and how that pertains to the fall, it's certainly challenging, it's a more complex set of problems. But the idea at the heart of that, that the public sector has to be part of the solution is essential. And I said argue, but, you know, how democratic is that public sector now that we are certainly trusting our governments do the right thing. And I think, by in large on COVID, the BC government has been really good, but other provinces haven't. And there's a wide range of provincial responses, depending on which particular flavour of government happened to be elected within the past few years. So there's certainly more to be done. I also think when you shift it back to climate, so much of the framework, over the past decade-plus, has been around carbon pricing. And it's this sort of market logic that when you consume something that emits greenhouse gases, then you're causing some harms to other people and into the future. And therefore, we just increase the price of that to reflect those damages, then the markets will work better. And there's some logic to making it more expensive to increase the costs of emitting carbon. But you have to do that in a way that recognizes the structural challenges that a lot of low income people face, and it's not necessarily so cut and dry. And really where we've been going, in terms of our policy work has been to focus more on regulation and public investment. Simply saying, ‘okay, after next year, you cannot build a building that's connected to the natural gas network.’ And we will have a plan that gets all of the existing buildings off of natural gas, you know, after a certain date. And you can debate whether that debate should be 2025 or 2035, or 2030. You can't buy an internal combustion engine vehicle in British Columbia. So simply making rules that make it clear and that drive the marketplace to where we want to go, rather than sort of tinkering on the margins and making it a little bit more expensive, and trying to use incentives along the way in various respects. Carbon pricing may have some benefits in terms of raising the revenues that we need to be able to spend what we need to do on climate action. But if the idea that it's just about making the market work better was always flawed to begin with. Because even besides the sort of environmental externality, or those additional costs imposed on third parties, there's all kinds of other challenges with markets. In terms of incomplete information, and market power, and unfair allocation of who has the bargaining power in particular relationships between labour and management, or between consumers and corporations. All of these things are part and parcel of it. So, if we could just jettison the idea of the market logic and governing society, due to COVID and climate, that's a big service to public policy going forward.

Am Johal  20:18
Marc, I'm wondering from your vantage point working at a progressive Think Tank, where you're producing research with partners, and putting it out into the public realm, and engaging with policymakers — and the mode of academic research oftentimes isn't working on the timeframes that civil society actors are working at, or the funding mechanisms, like SSHRC, take longer to pull together to be able to produce research. And given that we're in an emergency, what's your sort of reading about what works well, and what are the challenges in terms of working with academic researchers from a nonprofit civil society perspective? 

Marc Lee  21:05
Oh, that's a good question. I think there are a number of challenges for academics in terms of how they engage. That's not to say that there aren't a number of really great academics who are engaged in the public debate. And, you know, we see that here in BC and elsewhere. I follow a lot of them on Twitter. To some extent the scientists among them are doing the heavy lifting of documenting changes, and statistics, and things that happen over time that sort of build our foundation of knowledge. In my area, which is more around public policy, or what should government's do now, or the next few years — that type of academic research tends to be more limited. So certainly, there are academics who are able to engage in those conversations, and we've tried to engage those substantially ourselves. But for the most part, coming to the here and now, can be really challenging for them. There's also just the broader issues around who's participating, and whose voices are getting heard in those debates. And so I think we've also been trying to make more of an effort to incorporate things like decolonization, and racial injustice, into our thinking around climate justice. Which wasn't really as big of a deal when we first started out, we were really more focused on just the bigger inequalities — rich households and poor households, and renters and owners, and people had cars and people had transit. But all of those inequalities are generally exacerbated when you put them through a frame of racial injustice and decolonization. Certainly, decolonization in BC has been our really biggest challenge in terms of thinking about climate justice. For example, in the United States, a lot of the environmental justice literature is largely around that the adverse impacts that Black or Latino households have in regards to the placement of coal-fired power plants, or waste facilities, and that kind of stuff. That tends to be less of an issue here in BC. But the issues around First Nation rights and title — the whole justification of the province of British Columbia was a land grab, that took land to exploit those resources. And we've essentially done that and put a lot of those resources into the atmosphere, in the form of carbon dioxide. And so we are now trying to reckon with that legacy and how we go forward. And then I think the media landscape is really challenging in terms of communications right now. In addition to CCPA, there are many other NGOs who are also trying to get their message out. There are all kinds of alternative media who are doing a lot of great investigative work and other analysis. And there is a lot of competition for eyeballs and ears, in terms of what people are hearing. And I think that can make it challenging for the ordinary person who's going to work, and coming home, and dealing with the kids. And, you know, how much time do they really have to get deep into these policy debates — much less academic articles. So we've really tried to pitch it at a certain level where we're informing and consolidating a bunch of other research that people might not otherwise come across, trying to situate it in accessible language that's appropriate to those households that are going to be reading it, and then trying to give some clear directions about where policy should go. And to some extent what people can do to get more engaged, if it lights a fire under them?

Am Johal  24:58
Yeah, I'm wondering Marc, in terms of looking at current research questions that you're interested in pursuing — or where there seems to be maybe a lack of research available currently — what are some questions that are sort of keeping you up at night, or you think would be interesting to pursue in terms of the interface between research and policymaking?

Marc Lee  25:22
Well, I think one of the big challenges is that, like I said, as there are so many organizations that are engaged in this space, and in doing a lot of great work — the reality is that on climate and climate justice, there's so much complexity to the science, in the first place, and to the policy responses that we then make. And it basically lends itself to politicians kind of bullshitting their way out of it. And so essentially, the political spectrum in Canada when it comes to climate is, you get on the one hand on the right, sort of outright intransigence of a Stephen Harper approach. Which may acknowledge that climate change exists, but doesn't think it's that big a deal, or it's a very low priority amongst all of the other more pressing important priorities that they face. And then on the other side, you have the Federal Liberals or the BC NDP, where they pay lip service to climate action, then they pat themselves on the back with these grand declarations about how great they're doing, and the new measures they've introduced, and these distant targets that they've set. But when you look on the ground at what's actually happening, it ends up being much more modest. And that's just on the climate side. But you know, parallel to that, you see this mass permission, and if not outright public investment in infrastructure that's making the problem worse — LNG facilities, the trans mountain pipeline, being a prime example. And not only that, but also essentially subsidizing the very problem. That is we’re providing all of these credits against future royalties. So we're basically foregoing, for the development of the, say the natural gas resource — we should call it methane, cause its not really natural anymore. It's fracked methane gas. But we're foregoing those royalties, which are the public's share of the benefits of extracting that resource. And we're essentially handing those over to corporations. And in doing so, we are actually bringing online production that would otherwise be uneconomic. So we are actually bringing more fuel into the marketplace, even though commodity prices are incredibly low. And the gas companies aren't necessarily making a huge amount of money, but in order to meet some objectives of Northern development, and more jobs and resource industries, and the kind of idea that easy's the resource economy, and we have to just keep pushing on that. We're literally, if not directly investing in, then subsidizing the production of an industry that needs to be phased out, quite frankly, over the next decade or two.

Am Johal  28:11
I'm wondering if you can, from your vantage point of researching policy — both the federal and provincial level, related to climate change — I'm wondering if you can give your perspective both positive and critical, of each of the federal and provincial government in terms of the approaches they've taken?

Marc Lee  28:32
Well, if we start with the federal government, in the shift from the Conservative Harper government, to the Liberal Trudeau government, we have actually seen the development of climate policy. A lot of that effort has been around carbon pricing, and this kind of pan-Canadian carbon pricing framework where provinces can do their own thing as long as they meet some minimum benchmark. And if they don't meet that benchmark, then the federal government will impose that carbon pricing on them. Again, it's still rooted in that very kind of market orientation that if we just, you know, increase the price a little bit, then people will make decisions. And that's not necessarily true particularly in transportation, where it's most affected. People tend to be fairly locked into the the mode of transportation they are because of where they live and other factors and where they work and that kind of thing. The other part is that with the carbon pricing, we've essentially let industry off the hook for a lot of the emissions. So initially, the idea among economists was that all emissions had to pay this carbon price. And what we've done in the name of industrial competitiveness is that we've essentially exempted the vast majority of emissions from particular companies, or particular industries, so that they're only paying a tiny little bit in terms of total carbon tax. And now we're looking at various avenues to allow them to even avert that, through various offset mechanisms by investing in other sort of nature-based solutions, and forestry projects. All of which have a pretty dubious track record of actually reducing emissions. Some of them, particularly preventing deforestation, or preventing the conversion of grasslands into crops are good things to do. It's not that we shouldn't be doing those. But the idea that those things are actually sucking carbon from the atmosphere, that compensates for a polluter continuing to pollute, has been sort of disproved, over and over again. So increasingly, what we're seeing in Canada is this conversation on net zero. And it's not just Canada, it’s the rest of the world as well, but your net zero — the idea that by 2050, and we still have some remaining carbon emissions, but we gas balanced those out by various carbon removals. Whether it's nature or technological carbon sequestration storage, or they have a big fad now — sort of direct air capture to try to pull carbon directly from the atmosphere and then bury it under the ground. But essentially, we're creating all of these escape hatches for industry, that essentially allow them to perpetuate business as usual longer than we should. And I think that's a really dangerous distraction right now for federal policymakers. And too much of it is framed in the distant future, like 2050. Not enough is framed about ‘okay well, how much are you going to reduce emissions next year? How much you're going to reduce emissions the year after that? And what's your plan for going about doing that?’ And having something along the lines of budget updates like we do with fiscal matters. Where we have quarterly updates on how successful have we been? And are we on target? And if we don't meet that target what are the consequences? I think that's the type of kind of more rigorous carbon budgeting accounting framework that we've been talking about. Provincially we have the CleanBC plan. Which is sort of the first effort at some climate action since BC’s earlier — under the Gordon Campbell Liberal government, in 2008, since we tabled a Climate Action Plan, back then. It again, also kicks the can down the road in a number of key areas. It says that buildings have to be zero-emission, starting in 2032. So it's 11 years from now, that's not a particularly ambitious target. It says that all vehicle sales have to be zero-emission vehicles by 2040. Which is two full life cycles of vehicles that are going to pass through. So it's really easy to make these commitments far in the future, it's much more challenging to make those commitments in the here and now, and really back those with a budget — which hasn't really been done. And similarly, we are letting industry off the hook in terms of their emissions. The same kind of loopholes have been brought to bear in provincial systems. And I am concerned that we again are going to be pushing towards something that looks more like offsets for large industrial polluters. And really just the fundamental challenge of both federally and provincially. Over one quarter of our total emissions are simply from the production and extraction of oil and gas. Fossil fuel industries are a huge part, more than one quarter of our total emissions. And that's not even counting the fuel content itself, the bitumen that's taken out of the ground, the gas that comes out of BC’s North East, that eventually ends up in the atmosphere. Those are emissions are counted in the jurisdiction where they're combusted. Whether that's the United States or China, or Japan. So if we actually look at the full footprint of our activities in producing fossil fuels, we're a much bigger contributor to global climate change, than the rhetoric that, ‘oh, we're only worth, you know, a few percent. It's very, very small. We shouldn't worry about that because the world's a big place, and they're all these bigger polluters.’ But we are punching way above our weight in terms of contributing to the problem. And it just highlights that we need to be at the forefront of contributing to the solution, that we need to marshal these extensive resources in terms of financial capital, and human resources, and other infrastructure, to the challenge we have right now. The same level of urgency that we had in the early days of COVID. A long time ago, we could talk about sort of a smooth and gradual transition. And that seemed to make a lot of sense. But the state of climate science now, what we're seeing literally on the land base right before us, tells us we need to act with much more urgency. And that needs to be reflected in the commitments we see from government, and the money that's put behind them.

Am Johal  35:16
Yes certainly. You see even within the governing NDP party — be the sort of internal divisions around Site C, LNG Ferry Creek, and a number of other areas. And I think we'll see, some more flashpoints around environment and economy, as you mentioned. And wondering if there's anything you'd like to add Marc?

Marc Lee  35:41
Well, I think the essence of our climate justice approach, which we need to draw on right now is to just break it out of, just sort of a narrow amount of carbon accounting. Whether that's when we think about forests, or thinking about jobs or transportation. And really, the sweet sauce is in finding the win-wins. So that if, for example, in transportation, it's not just a matter of switching out every internal combustion engine with an electric engine for cars. And it's not just about switching every long commute in a car with an equally long commute, in a bus. It's about fundamentally reshaping our communities to have a much, much smaller footprint environmentally, and in terms of carbon emissions. And that means more things like complete communities, the idea that people should be able to live closer to where they work, and access public services, and other amenities, and parks, and shops — and all of the things that that we need. So that means to put on the table things like greater levels of density in the areas currently dominated by single family or detached housing. That's a major source of inequality in terms of the urban fabric, where we have 30% of the population living on 80% of the land base. So we need to do that in a way that builds genuinely affordable housing that can house, not just people who need it right now, but the fact that there are going to be climate refugees and migrants coming from other parts of BC, other parts of Canada or North America, and other parts of the world. As an area that's quite habitable, that has abundant resources, and that’s benefited so much from the use of fossil fuels, we have a moral obligation to do that. So we need to actually increase the amount of housing we're building, but we need to stop building luxury condos as a secondary investment properties for people who are locals or live outside the area, and needs to actually build the housing that people need. But if we can do that, we can address our affordable housing issues, and our transportation issues, and our jobs issues. Because in doing that, we need to create a lot of jobs. And we were talking about jobs that we think are no longer viable economically or environmentally in the Northeast of the province — you know, trying to find things that bridge all of those elements in a way that improves everyone's quality of life and leads to a better society. So that I think is the real key piece of that a climate justice framework offers as we move forward.

Am Johal  38:34
Great, thank you so much for joining us on Below the Radar, Marc. 

Marc Lee  38:39
Thanks for having me on. Take care.

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Paige Smith  38:44
​Below the Radar is a knowledge democracy podcast created by SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement. Thank you for listening to this third episode of our Climate Justice & Inequality series. You can learn more about Marc’s writings, and the Climate Justice Project, in the show notes below. Thanks again for listening, stay tuned for the next instalment of this series with Eugene Kung.

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Transcript auto-generated by Otter.ai and edited by the Below the Radar team.
September 15, 2021
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