St. Vincent & the Grenadines Green Party


Fri 27th Jun 2008

Green lifestyles must be the future

When the SVG Green Party was founded on 10th January 2005, PM Gonsalves said it was a joke. When the Green Party was formed in Germany in 1980, the established parties treated them like freaks, calling them 'terrorists' and 'forest hermits' (source Newsweek 2nd June 08).

Today, Greens have come of age. Educated and rich, Greens voters have higher incomes than those of any other party in Germany. People who have turned to Green lifestyles and become Green supporters have seen an increase of standard of living. Greens have a reputation for sensible pragmatism when in power.

At present, Greens share power in Germany with Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats Conservative party. In a formerly unthinkable realignment of German politics the Greens have 53 members in the German parliament.

Ivan O'Neal's inspiration to form SVG Green Party came from his distinguished and honourable military service of over 31 years with the British Royal Air Force. As an environmentalist engineer, he assessed how Royal Air Force pilots can survive in desert, jungle and sea environments when the pilots are forced to land in such environments.

Spending 6 months in the desert in Libya in 1958, a young Ivan O'Neal was quick to observe climate change and its serious threat to survival. Doing two years of jungle survival training in Brunei and Malaysia in 1960, Ivan O'Neal fully embraced environmentalism and saw the critical need to protect and preserve the rain forest for future generations. Ivan O'Neal, the Leader of SVG Green Party, was awarded the Brunei Cross by His Majesty the Sultan of Brunei, and the Meritorious Service medal by the Ministry of Defence in London.

PM Gonsalves says he wants SVG to be Green. This clearly shows that Green ideas are better and ULP regime ideas are outdated and backward. PM Gonsalves' bizarre idea of Green though is building a cross country road to tear apart our rainforest; long-term dependency on high priced oil under the Petro-Caribe agreement; building an airport to increase climate change and flood low-lying homes and businesses in SVG; and bringing mass tourism which will drain SVG of water and electricity since tourists consume about 7 times more resources than locals.

Clearly, PM Gonsalves has little idea of what Green philosophy and environmentalism really means. Handing out a few light bulbs is no answer to destroying our rainforest. Greens take an holistic approach to change, incorporating economic, educational, social and environmental policies that reinforce and complement each other.

Both the ULP and NDP regimes' policies are short-sighted. After 24 years of NDP and ULP where are we? Even today, they are both relying on begging as a way forward, begging Taiwan, begging the EU, begging almost everywhere. There's no independence of thought.

Environmentalism has become the oxygen of mainstream politics globally. An SVG Green Party government will give new vision and new direction to SVG, creating a strong and sustainable economy. We will create thousands of new sustainable jobs, wealth, good health, offer children a proper education of international standards and eradicate poverty and crime. SVG Green Party has the foresight to lead SVG to a richer future through real Green sensible policies.

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