Climate scientist Andrew Weaver became the B.C. Green Party's first elected MLA. He's also under some pressure to become leader now that Jane Sterk is stepping down.

Weaver coy on bid for B.C. Green Party leadership

Greens' first elected MLA prefers other interim leader replace Jane Sterk for now

The B.C. Green Party’s first elected MLA is so far playing down the possibility he may replace the outgoing Jane Sterk as the party’s leader.

Andrew Weaver said he won’t take on the role of interim leader and prefers someone else do that while he learns the ropes of MLA work and advancing the Green cause in the Legislature.

“The next few years will see many challenges for the province, and possible opportunities for the party, should by-elections be held,” said the noted climate scientist and new Green MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head.

“I recognize that in the lead up to the 2017 election, should I decide to seek re-election, and if I am the only sitting Green party MLA, then it would be natural to seek leadership of the party at that time.”

Sterk announced this month she will resign Aug. 24, adding she hopes Weaver runs.

She said in an interview she leaves the leadership with the party strong and well-positioned.

Greens might have captured more seats had the May provincial election not suddenly narrowed in the final days from a previously anticipated NDP win, Sterk added.

There had been a chance, she said, of a Green breakout, mirroring that of the fledgling BC Liberal party in the 1991 election against the NDP and then-ruling Socreds.

“The conditions of the election were not amenable to getting more Greens elected,” Sterk said. “This election was just a really weird election. There was a lot of fear-based stuff that happened at the end that moved people away from considering an NDP government.”

Sterk said she doesn’t regret running against Carole James in the ex-NDP leader’s Victoria stronghold instead of targeting a different seat.

– with a file from Victoria News