Alberta’s government is not thrilled with David Suzuki’s recent comments on pipelines.
“There will be pipelines blown up if our leaders are not aware of what is going on,” Suzuki told CHEK News at an Extinction Rebellion protest in downtown Victoria on Saturday without elaborating further.
Suzuki’s comments, which were in response to a question about why he took part in the Extinction Rebellion protest, have attracted national attention and sparked a firestorm on social media – with a handful of politicians expressing concern that the prominent Canadian’s comments could encourage acts of violence.
“This type of rhetoric is dangerous and undemocratic. This implies that energy workers and infrastructure should be targets for terrorist acts. All political leaders should unreservedly condemn this statement, “Conservative leader Erin O’Toole said on Twitter on Monday.
READ: David Suzuki says pipelines will be ‘blown up’ if leaders do not act on climate change
BC’s Secretary of Public Safety Mike Farnworth said on Monday that Suzuki’s comments were inappropriate at a time when “thousands of individuals have been displaced” in the province due to catastrophic floods.
“I think it’s just not helpful at all,” Farnworth said, adding. “Have a climate action plan. That’s the way forward, that’s the way we should deal with climate change. Not by making statements that alert people or cause concern.”
The Suzuki Foundation clarified the comments on Monday, saying they had been in contact with Suzuki, who confirmed that the comment was not a direct threat.
“David Suzuki has been predicting environmental consequences for decades. Similarly, this comment was a predictive reflection on the escalating efforts and potential for conflict due to the effects of man-made climate change. “
The remarks also caught the attention of Alberta’s UCP government, which not only demanded an apology from Suzuki, but made a proposal to formally condemn him.
“Today, we would like to immediately call on David Suzuki to apologize for what he said and to stop any remarks that could be used in any way to support eco-terrorism of any kind,” said Jason Nixon, Alberta’s Environment Minister and member of the ruling United Conservative Party, said during a rally in the House on Tuesday.
Nixon, who is Alberta’s landlord, said Suzuki’s comments about blowing up a pipeline are incorrect and unacceptable.
“Comments that call for something to blow up I find unacceptable,” he said.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney called Suzuki’s remarks “totally irresponsible” and that they create a “rationalization” of violence.
“I think it creates a context that people can use to rationalize violence, and that’s why it’s so dangerous,” Kenny said Tuesday.
Suzuki, for his part, told CHEK News on Monday that he was not trying to incite violence of any kind, but stressed that he stands by what he said.
“We have come to a time when civil disobedience is what we need to do now – to put our bodies at risk – because if we do not do this, then I fear what the next phase will be, which will be humans will begin. to blow up pipelines, he said.