BELLEVILLE—Today, Ontario Liberal leadership candidate Michael Coteau visited Belleville for a full-house town hall meeting with local Liberals and to share his environmental plan (https://www.anewfocuson.com/a_green_ontario) that puts rural Ontario at the centre of keeping Ontario green.
“A green Ontario is not only an environmental imperative, it is a massive building block for constructing our future prosperity,” said the third-term MPP.
“This part of Ontario is already home to an abundance of natural beauty,” said Coteau. “We have to put our natural environment first—we have to make sure that the home to our natural beauty prospers from our plan to protect it as well.”
Coteau’s policy paper, A New Focus on the Environment, pledges to:
- Build regionally integrated transit that is fare-free for users;
- Implement a renewed strategy to protect our lakes, rivers, forest and wetlands;
- End commercial exploitation of water;
- Increase land protected by provincial parks and conservation areas;
- Bring forward Right-to-Repair legislation to help rural communities build strategies against planned obsolescence, saving them money on electronic devices and reducing waste.
“These plans are good for the environment, good for the economy and good for people. It’s not about left or right—it’s about seizing an opportunity and making this province work for everyone,” Coteau said.
Michael Coteau immigrated to Canada as a child and grew up in Flemingdon Park, a working-class neighbourhood in North York. The first member of his family to graduate high school and university, he started his own small business, worked as a community organizer and head of a national nonprofit. He was elected to the Toronto District School Board three times and served as vice-chair of the board, championing digital tools in the classroom, equity strategies and community use of schools. Coteau was elected three times as Member of Provincial Parliament for Don Valley East, and served in multiple ministries where he was tasked with bringing people together to fix tough files, including supports for children with autism, reforming services for children in care, delivering a successful Pan-Am Games, supporting film and cultural economic development, and implementing an anti-racism strategy. He and his wife, Lori, are raising two young daughters.
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