Adriane Carr is working to be among the first Green MPs in Canada. Recent opinion polls conducted in Vancouver Centre show that she has a great chance of winning in the upcoming election. Greens have been elected in over 70 countries and are part of coalition governments in regions such as Europe. Their influence has shifted government policies towards a sounder sustainable path. Carr feels it is time for this change in Canada and she is ready to help change the climate in parliament. How did Carr become BC's most successful Green activist and politician?
Her greatest political success so far was earning 27% of the popular vote in her riding in the 2001 election-the best result of any Green running in a provincial or national election in Canada. Her leadership has changed the face of politics in BC on issues such as renewable energy, food security, value-added forestry, electoral reform and getting junk food out of schools.
During her six years as the Leader of the Green Party of BC (2000-2006), she established the party as a major political force in BC. She was included in the 2001 and 2005 televised leaders' debates, the first Green Leader in North America to be included in such debates. As a result of her performance, in 2001 the Greens increased their votes by 600 percent to over 12% of the popular vote.
Carr's lifelong work for the environment is impressive. She gained a love of the outdoors growing up in BC and then helping her husband Paul George run the fledgling Western Canada Wilderness Committee (WCWC). She has sat on federal government advisory committees including the Biodiversity Convention Implementation Committee and the Canadian International Development Agency's (CIDA's) Environment and Development Support Programme. In 1983 Carr co-founded the BC Green Party (North America's first Green Party) and was its leader for two years. From 1989 to 2000 she worked full-time for WCWC, heading up this conservation group's international campaigns and helping win official park protection for 47 BC wilderness areas. Carr played a key executive role in growing WCWC into one of Canada's largest membership-based environmental groups. She also played a central role in forging a landmark agreement bringing peace to the "war in the woods" in Clayoquot Sound, leading to its designation as an international Biosphere Reserve.
On a personal level, Carr has always been compassionate and solutions-oriented. Conscious of her impact on the planet, she drives a Prius hybrid and, with her husband, built their solar-heated home. Like many Canadians, she is greatly influenced by her hard-working immigrant parents. She has a Master's degree in geography from UBC and taught for 12 years at Vancouver Community College where she developed a field school, helped launch an environmental studies program, chaired the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies and, as an elected faculty association representative, helped create a solution to budget cuts that preserved classes and jobs. Carr is a passionate advocate for electoral reform, realizing that in a fair voting system a party's share of seats should equal its share of votes. In 2002 she launched an Initiative Petition gathering 98,165 signatures in 90 days with the help of 4,002 canvassers and official support from trade unions such as the BC Nurses' Union.
Carr's drive in life is to make the world better for future generations. Her commitment began when at age 12 she was in a BC youth choir that toured the world, including countries in Asia, the mid-East and Europe. The trip opened her eyes to the disparity amongst peoples and the tremendous advantages of living in Canada; advantages such as our natural environment and quality of life that she cherishes and has dedicated herself to help sustain. She's proud to have contributed to the world by raising two socially conscious children who are attending University.
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