From fires to floods: Confronting the crisis

r1 Does BC’s climate plan make the grade? ... r19 November 2021 | Legal e-Brief FacebookTwitter YouTube Instagram WCEL logo Donate today!

Dear Paov,

BC communities are in climate emergency mode once again as flooding, mudslides and road closures continue to impact people across the province. Our thoughts are with all those affected and the heroic rescue efforts underway. This serves as another stark reminder that our governments must do all they can to address climate change.

With a new pact signed at the UN Climate Conference (COP26), we’ve shared our thoughts on the global negotiations, as well as climate planning here at home. Tackling the climate crisis – as well as its intertwined threats to biodiversity, health and safety, and human rights – will require coordinated efforts, a holistic lens and a fundamental shift in how we view our relationship with the planet.

Grading BC’s Climate Plan: How does the Roadmap to 2030 measure up to BC’s climate goals? Graphic of report card grading targets outlined in BC's Roadmap to 2030 climate planWhen the BC government’s long-awaited climate plan, Roadmap to 2030, was unveiled last month, it was met with polarizing reactions. Some praised the Roadmap as world-leading, while others were less than complimentary.

We thought it would be useful to be specific about what West Coast found positive and negative about the plan. Staff Lawyer Andrew Gage breaks down what aspects of the Roadmap understood the assignment – or failed to make the grade.
Climate and the ocean: How to combat ocean acidification Oceans are significant carbon sinks, and healthy seas help buffer us from climate impacts. At the same time, when oceans absorb carbon, they become more acidic. This exacerbates the stressors ecosystems are already experiencing due to climate change.

Here are a few things you should know about ocean acidification – and importantly, how legal tools can help. Check it out!
Saltwater stories from the coast The BC coast is a global treasure; it’s unique, beautiful and abundant. That’s why it’s so hard to believe BC is one of the only coastal jurisdictions in North America without a unified plan and law to protect it.

Explore our new interactive map featuring stories of the coast and how it’s impacted by a jumble of regulations and laws overseen by different ministries and departments. These stories highlight the need for a BC coastal marine strategy – a Blueprint for the Coast.
Take action: BC needs a law to protect biodiversity Wildflower with pollinator Cumulative impacts of human activities like logging, mining, and oil and gas development have taken a serious toll on biodiversity in BC. A new, overarching biodiversity law – co-developed with Indigenous peoples – could be a game-changer for protecting and healing the web of life that sustains us.

Learn more about this holistic legal solution and take action to show your support.
Preservation over profits: A community effort to protect Salt Spring Island wetlands Our Access to Justice programs support clients and communities with free legal advice and funding to protect the lands and waters they love.

This month, our clients at the Salt Spring Island Water Preservation Society share how they came together in a community-led effort to secure legal protection for local wetlands and forests, to preserve the waters they rely on for generations to come. Read their full story.

Welcome Leo Yu, West Coast’s new Executive Coordinator!

Leo will be working closely with our Executive Director & Senior Counsel Jessica Clogg to support the operations and governance of West Coast. He is passionate about community collaboration, and we are very lucky to have him! Read his bio here.

The effects of human-caused climate change are taking a toll in BC, from wildfires to recent floods and landslides. West Coast depends on donations from individuals like you to help us confront this crisis. Any donation you make in this time of need can support our climate law programs.

Please stay safe! If you are currently being impacted by the ongoing BC state of emergency, check with your local municipality for the latest updates, or Emergency Info BC and Prepared BC.

Questions? Feedback? Want more?
Get in touch at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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