John Percy, the new leader of the provincial Green Party, has set the ambitious goal of 10 per cent of the vote in the next election.

Nova Scotia’s Green Party has had a complete changing of the guard, according to their newly-elected leader John Percy.

Percy won the top spot at the provincial party’s October AGM, boasting 93 per cent of the vote over Sebastian Ronin. But according to Percy, the leader position is not the only change within the party.

“We don’t only have new leadership, we have a whole new executive as well,” he said. “Every position has changed, we have enthusiastic people who realized that we came very close to the brink last year, and we don’t want to repeat that.”

The Greens came close to being deregistered as a party this summer when they missed several deadlines to file donor information and candidate expenses. Former Green leader Ryan Watson announced his resignation shortly afterwards.

Watson was also embarrassed by revelations he travelled to campaign stops during the election in a 2007 Cadillac SRX.

The party received 2.3 per cent of the vote in this year’s provincial election, unchanged from 2006.

Percy has set ambitious goals of winning 10 per cent of the vote in the next election, as well as quadrupling Green Party membership within the next three and a half years. He also said the NDP’s majority victory in June is an asset to the Greens, because it gives the party time to regroup.

“This is going to give our party plenty of time to build,” he said.

Percy acknowledged the NDP have traditionally been associated with environmental concerns, but he implied the New Democrats have been moving away from their left wing faction.

“If the NDP was really serious about the environment, more than likely (Halifax Chebucto MLA) Howard Epstein would be our environment minister at this point,” he added.

“The fact that he was basically shunted aside, I think, speaks volumes here.” 

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