Cameron Wigmore, Green Party Member: October 2006

October 30, 2006

Council Meeting Very Productive

"It was a very positive, collaborative meeting... with amazing progress on tough issues." - E May

I am very proud to be a part of this amazing team.

I arrived at the Ottawa airport and was surprised to hear my name announced. I was called to the info desk where I met up with two other council members in order to share a cab. We went straight to the new national office for the open house and were greeted by our staff and about 100 local members.

Near the door was a pumpkin with our logo impressively carved into it. I was going to do this at home but after examining all of the different lines to cut I decided not to put myself through the torture.

The crowd was huge and most of us had a chance to get to know eachother. I hope to spend time with our staff in a quieter setting in the future. I had some great conversations and then joined some councillors & staff at a nearby pub for more conversation and preparation for our two day meeting.

(Ben West, BC Rep; Cameron Wigmore, AB Rep & Amber Jones, Sask Rep)

I am very excited about our council team. On Saturday we started off with a long day ahead and tackled everything fearlessly.
Our chairperson, Melanie Ransom, has done a great job keeping us on track and moving our meetings forward in a structured, respectful and organized manner.

(Jean-Francois Pinel, elected as Treasurer & current councillor-at-large, reviewing the prices on the wine list. Nothing escapes this man ;-)

At dinner Jean-Fracois was quick to point out that the Party doesn't cover alcoholic beverages. I just had to get a picture of him scowling at the $64 bottles of wine. I drank water.

We had two full days of meetings (the minutes will be posted on the GPC website in the near future) and I think everyone was please with the quanity of work we did. I've found that a key to productive meetings is to have adequate discussion, and then pass a motion. Discussion without direction is the mother of all time vampires, and meetings without discussion can do very bad things. Thankfully we had the right amount of both and will be moving forward with a clear direction.

I left a rainy windy Ottawa and arrived back in a cold snowy Calgary. I sat down to 100+ emails and a new list of projects to tackle, and here I am posting on my blog. Time management is on my list of things to improve... ;-)

Thanks to all staff, councillors and members who helped to make this a great weekend!

October 24, 2006

Reality Check: Sustainable Development

I recently had a great conversation with someone who was turned right off of the term 'sustainable development'. Their definition was the same as the old line parties using this catch phrase to sound good; increasing consumption, or 'development', while giving a lot of lip service with regard to the environment, saying the word 'sustainable' repeatedly. I agreed with my friend that it's frustratingly silly and that the two words appeared to contradict each other. Fortunately there is one political party that is reality based and does a good job of bringing politics 'down to Earth' (pun intended). The Green Party has a firm grasp of what sustainable development really is.

There are different definitions of the words sustainable and development. These words combined have been thrown around haphazardly by politicians so a clarification seems appropriate. I agree with the current Green Party definition of sustainability from their policies. It states that, “Activities are sustainable when they use materials in continuing cycles, use continuously reliable sources of energy, and come mainly from the potentials of being human (i.e., communication, creativity, coordination, appreciation, and spiritual and intellectual development).”

On the flipside, activities are non-sustainable when they require continual input of non-renewable resources, use renewable resources faster than their rate of renewal, cause cumulative degradation of the environment, require resources in quantities that could never be available for all people, and lead to the extinction of other life forms.

Now hold on a minute! That last part sounds more like what the current politicians want us to believe is sustainable, yet it's exactly the opposite. I'll go with the definition of sustainability that the Green Party uses, thank you very much.

To 'develop' according to my definition (not grow or consume more, but develop as in mature or change) seems like something that all types of green-minded individuals can agree to be a good thing. Promoting Fair Trade instead of Free Trade, viewing the economy as a subset of ecology (aka eco-economics), promoting green industries & 'green-collar jobs' as well as a move away from dependence on non-green technologies, and realizing that our level of consumption does not equate to well-being or quality of life (and subsequently supporting a reduction in our levels of consumption) all fall under my own definition of sustainable development.

See A Question Of Direction for more on this subject.

October 23, 2006

Elizabeth May Runs In London Byelection!

The race is on to elect our first Green MP.

It’s definite. Elizabeth May is running in London Centre North.

We need your help in electing Elizabeth.

We need volunteers. We need donations. We need people to make calls. We need to let every Green voter in Canada know. For details go to


See news coverage through the links below.

October 21, 2006

Our AGM & Afterparty Was Fantastic!!!

It couldn't have gone better!

Thanks to Mark MacGillivray & George Read for attending and making sure everything went smootly. Your help in adopting a riding constitution was invaluable!

(George R at left and Mark M at right, just after the meeting)

We had 10 members in attendance and three observers, including one 'green curious' friend. People came to the meeting, held in Rosebud, from Camrose, Kelsey, Three
Hills, Drumheller, Strathmore & Calgary.

(Gerry Piro & Midge Lambert, newly elected to the Crowfoot EDA Executive)

The highlight of our inaugural general meeting was electing two new executives.

Gerry Piro is our new Financial Agent. He is a resident of Camrose, AB where he has an accounting business. His experience as an accountant and a longtime supporter of the
Greens will be extemely helpful in our efforts moving forward!

Midge Lambert is our new Membership Chair. She's a caterer and brought a very tasty platter of yummy snacks to the meeting. Her outgoing and friendly attitude will make her an awesome representative. Midge is already active planning events for the Green Party in and around Camrose!

(Jennifer Wigmore, my wife & Crowfoot EDA's Fundraising Chair, at center back, with co-workers at our Halloween afterparty)

After the Crowfoot general meeting ended we all headed back to my house for the big Halloween party. There were over 40 people in our little house and it was a blast! The credit for this sucess goes to Jennifer. Her experience with event planning really paid off. Tying in our AGM with a Halloween party brought out friends and acquaintances who otherwise would not have had any exposure to the Greens.

At one point we shut everyone in, turned off the music and made everyone watch videos of Elizabeth May. People were surprisingly glued to what she was saying. Ruth Bowker provided dozens of spooky cookies and sub sandwiches, and we had Vietnamese sticky rice with fish sauce. This was a huge hit with the crowd, which hung around until the wee hours of the morning. High point of the night: someone who I'd never met came up to me, asked to join the party, and made a donation to the EDA!

This was an amazing event and I am excited to be working with our new executive as we move forward. Up next is the Crowfoot nominations contest. Stay tuned!

October 19, 2006

GPC Video Links & Update Of My Efforts

Elizabeth May recently signing a copy of her book. Click on image to find out more.

There has been so much media attention in the last few weeks that I can hardly keep up with our leader! Interviews on national television, radio interviews, an 11 minute profile on CBC's the National, and other coverage, all linked to from here so you can try to keep up with our tireless leader.

This has been a busy season for me. Tomorrow is the Crowfoot Federal Green Party Association's inaugural AGM, and as CEO of this riding I'm hard at work preparing. Three weeks ago I was in Calgary attending the joint AGM of the Alberta Greens & the Provincial Division of the Federal Green Party at which I reported on my work as an executive member of the Provincial Division. In one week I'm headed back to Ottawa for Federal Council's first inperson meeting. We meet mostly by teleconference because that's the Green way to do things (less travel = less consumption of fossil fuels) but face-to-face meetings are a must.

So back to those links. I've had to do some digging for many of these so please take advantage of them all being in one place! Some are also found on the Party website, but they are provided for you here as direct links to the media. I highly recommend the MPtv interview and the profile story for download. Enjoy!

Elizabeth May profile
(11 min AVI video for download. Right-click & 'save as')

Radio interview of May
(18 min, mp3 audio download - Conservative radio talkshow host gets massively schooled by Elizabeth May ;-)

Speech by E.May as new leader of the Green Party
(CPAC video footage from Ottawa convention. Right click, choose 'save as' & open with your favorite media player)

Excerpt of May's 1st speech as leader of the Green Party
(realmedia audio format)

Video feed of E May October 5 comments from the Hill
October 5, 2006 - CBC News (realmedia video format)

MPtv - Interview with E May Oct 17th, '06
Garth Turner interviews Elizabeth May (Google Video Site)

Mercer Report - Tree Cutting With GPC Leader E May
(go to main page via link, click on 'videos' tab, and under week of Oct 17 select 'Tree Cutting with E May' video to watch... yes, the tree was dead ;-)

Debate incl E.May from The Big Picture w/Avi Lewis
(scroll down to 'watch video' on mid-right and click on 'video 47:19' under 'watch the town hall debate')

More on Garth Turner at This Blog.

Let me know if you have any trouble with the links.

October 6, 2006

Green Party reacts to Minister Ambrose - No Plan After All

You may have noticed that yesterday, despite months of build-up and promises of a plan, the environment minister Rona Ambrose announced that there is no 'Green Plan Two'. Instead of a plan the Conservatives will be making a series of environmental announcements. Instead of action now, they will be going back to consult groups on how to move forward - the same groups that were already consulted and decided to ratify the Kyoto Protocol. What Ambrose has been offering lacks detail, and opposition parties and environmentalists are accusing the government of wanting to stall environmental initiatives by pretending to start from scratch.

Just moments after this development, Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada, who was at the house of commons when all of this was taking place, was pulled outside for an intense media scrum and widely interviewed.

One great four minute video clip is here (you'll need real media player to watch):

The CBC story that has a link to this video is here:

The Green Party is on the ground in Ottawa and across Canada, and the media as well as the Canadian public is taking notice of the party and it's views on many issues. This development is an example of how the Green Party is an effective and important part of the mix in Canadian politics. Also, this development also shows a lack of accountability on the part of the Conservative government. Wasn't that one of their top five priorities? After abandoning the Kyoto Protocol (which the Liberals did a poor job of dealing with as well) the Conservatives promised us that a 'made in Canada solution' was on the way. Months later they tell us there is no plan. The Conservatives came to power on the promise to make government more accountable. I agree with the author of the story linked to below, that they need to be reminded that our government should be accountable to the people of Canada - not just its business elite.

There have been other developments showing a move away from real accountability including attending and participating in a recent highly secret deep integration summit in Banff. See Maude Barlow's piece on this from the Toronto Star through the link below.
So two stories for you today; Green Party responds to the lack of a read plan on the environment from the Conservatives, and secret meeting raises more questions about government accountability and transparency.


Cameron Wigmore
Alberta Representative, Federal Council
CEO, Crowfoot EDA
Drumheller, AB

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More from the Green Party and national news stories below. Enjoy!
Elizabeth May participates in televised discussion on global warming (note: large video file)

Green Party media release: Canada can meet Kyoto targets

The GPC's 'Green Plan Squared' (PDF file) This is an important document for understanding the Green Party's strategy on energy, the economy & ecology...

May's Blog: Rona Ambrose definitely does NOT clear the air....

Ambrose denies retreating from international co-operation on environment (Sept 14th, Canadian Press)

Ambrose balks at using existing powers to smack down polluters (

Grim Report Serves as wakeup call for Canada (

An Inconvenient Truth (on DVD November 21st) An important documentary on the science of climate change!