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Premier Clark says jobs-environment conflict consumes her government

VICTORIA - Premier Christy Clark says she doesn't want to be the premier that gives up leadership on the environment.

But she admits her government is wrestling with a problem when it comes her plan to create jobs in the energy sector while sticking to B.C.'s legal commitment to the toughest greenhouse gas emission cuts in North America.

In a year-end interview with The Canadian Press, Clark says a team of advisors inside and outside of government are looking for ways to still meet the targets without losing the potential to create thousands of jobs in Kitimat, Fort Nelson and Dawson Creek through natural gas projects.

Clark says she expects to announce her solution within the first three months of the New Year, but adds she doesn't want to lose the jobs or become known as the premier who gave up B.C.'s leadership on fighting climate change.

Simon Fraser University's climate change expert Mark Jaccard says the province is already on the way to blowing its target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by one-third by 2020 and only a major move to renewable energy sources will prevent the inevitable.

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