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David Suzuki goes on profanity-laden rant at federal government news conference

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Warning: This story has quotes that include profanity 

Environmentalist David Suzuki ranted to federal government ministers, media and tourism industry workers at a news conference Friday afternoon in Vancouver.

The event was held to announce federal funding for B.C.’s tourism sector, but Suzuki took the opportunity to speak out about what he calls the government’s lack of action regarding climate change.

“All this bullshit about how you’re trying to encourage the coming together to this beautiful land, what are we doing about this land? We’re not doing the right things to ensure tourism into the future,” said Suzuki, who also described comments made during the federal announcement as "bullshit."

Suzuki spoke out when reporters were given the opportunity to ask questions about the announcement.

“Look at the smoke, that’s the new reality,” said Suzuki, pointing at the view of North Vancouver’s mountainscape. “You talk about tourism? What are they going to have to come here in British Columbia if we’re not dealing with the major issues that confront us. The loss of biodiversity, old growth forests being cut down and climate change from the use of fossil fuel.”

Suzuki specifically directed his comments towards federal Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault, who announced a near $1.2 million dollar investment to B.C.'s tourism industry.

“The view speaks for itself. If a picture’s a thousand words, the view today’s a million,” said Boissonnault, pointing to the water and mountains in his opening remarks.

Boissonnault said the investment will benefit four major tourism projects in the province. Digital tools and online infrastructure to help boost adventure tourism will be supported through $500,000 in funding.

Another $495,000 will be allocated to address labour market shortages in the sector. Nearly $100,000 will go towards a new bus for Uniglobe Travel, and $99,000 will support the construction of Harbour Air’s new sea plane terminal in Squamish.

“Once complete, this location will give residents, as well as visitors in Squamish, travel options to right here in the heart of this beautiful city, to the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Seattle and beyond,” said Harbour Air president Randy Wright.

Officials didn’t respond to Suzuki’s comments. Suzuki was seen leaving the event via sea plane. 

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