Canada set to ban Single-Use Plastics by 2021

Water

The Canadian government announced plans this week to ban all single-use plastics by 2021. This is a great step in protecting the environment from the wastefulness of stars and plastic bags. The Canadian federal plan is to try to get manufactures of the plastic items to foot the bill and not consumers, this way it’s the companies causing the problem paying for the damages. Let’s hope even more countries join in on the ban on wasteful plastics.

Canada’s move follows one by the European Parliament, which voted earlier this year to ban several single-use plastic products, and recent disputes with the Philippines and Malaysia over Canadian waste shipped to them.

Less than 10% of plastic used in Canada gets recycled, and Canadians will throw away an estimated C$11 billion ($8.3 billion) worth of plastic materials each year by 2030 without a change in course, the government said in a statement.

Canada may require manufacturers to use a set amount of recycled content, the government said. Also, federal and provincial authorities will work together so that companies, rather than just municipalities, take more responsibility for the recycling process.

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100 Debates About the Environment

Forest

Canadians are heading to the polls this year to elect a new federal government and GreenPAC wants everyone in Canada to engage in a debate about the state of our environment. On October 7th, 2019 they’re running non-partisan all-candidates debates in 100 ridings across Canada from St. John’s to Victoria. If you care about Canadian politics and the environment then please considering helping organize one of the debates. T

This election we’re holding 100 debates to make sure the environment is the issue everyone’s talking about. We need all the help we can get to pull it off.

If you’ve got a bit of time and energy, and are passionate about the environment, use the form on the right to get involved.

We need committed people in many different fields: organizers, videographers, photographers, social media experts, canvassers and much more. Join us and help supercharge our project

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British Columbia’s Carbon Pricing Works Well

carbon output

British Columbia shows carbon pricing works while another province looks uselessly backwards.

The regressive and antidemocratic Ontario “conservative” government is set to sue the Canadian government for protecting the environment. The argument by the Conservatives is basically that an economy allowed to inefficiently consume non-renewable resources is good and that sustainable policy (carbon pricing) is bad. Yes, it’s as ludicrous as it sounds.

Hopefully this wasteful battle between governments ends in the environment’s favour. If Ontario just followed British Columbia’s lead this wouldn’t be an issue and arguably the economy would be in better shape. In B.C. the carbon pricing has reduced emissions while making a more energy efficient economy. Sustainable businesses are seeing growth in B.C. that they wouldn’t see elsewhere.

“This carbon tax is a model for the world that well-designed carbon pricing can be good for the environment and the economy. In the 11 years since B.C. brought in its carbon tax, it’s outpaced the rest of Canada both on emission reduction and GDP growth,” said Stewart Elgie, a professor of law and economics at the University of Ottawa.

In the meantime, numerous researchers have tried to determine the impact of the tax. According to a 2015 paper, B.C.’s emissions had dropped by between five and 15 per cent since the tax was implemented, and it had a “negligible impact” on the overall economy.

Elgie, of the University of Ottawa, was part of a wide-ranging 2013 study that showed a 19 per cent drop in B.C.’s per capita fuel consumption in the first four years of the tax, while the province’s economy slightly outperformed the rest of the country.

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Birch Bark Coffee Provides Drinkable Water

Coffee production takes a lot of water and produces a wonderful bean filtered drink at the end. In Canada many aboriginal communities are suffering from a lack of potable water let alone good coffee. The plight of these communities enrages Canadians since one of the wealthiest nations in the world can’t even provide drinkable water for its citizens. Mark Marsolais-Nahwegahbow saw the hardships faced in these communities and decide to do something: make coffee that will fund sustainable healthy potable water.

In March, Marsolais-Nahwegahbow, a member of the Whitefish River First Nation, launched the Birch Bark Coffee Company, an Ottawa-based coffee roastery that produces fair trade, certified-organic coffee.

More than just a coffee company, Birch Bark is a social enterprise: $2.50 from the sale of every pound of coffee will go into a trust to purchase water purifiers for every home in an Indigenous community in Ontario that’s experiencing water issues.

“I really can’t fix the bigger problem of the water plant, but I can definitely bring clean water into a home instantly,” Marsolais-Nahwegahbow said. “And when I’m done Ontario, I’m moving my way across Canada to work on every province.”

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Refugees Who Helped Snowden Welcomed to Canada

safe texting

One of the families who helped American whistleblower Edward Snowden stay safe while he was in Hong Kong have arrived in Canada. Snowden provided proof to the world that the USA spies on everyone including their own citizens. Due to his brave act he was the most wanted man on the planet and his safety was not assured by any state. During those few days in Hong Kong a couple families provided Snowden shelter since they too knew what it was like to be threatened by their own government.

It’s so nice to see that refugees who were struggling took time to help another in a similar situation get a happy next step. You can find out more about the Snowden refugees at For The Refugees.

“They are extremely brave people who have nothing, but when someone in distress needed them, they opened their doors,” said Montreal-based Guillaume Cliche-Rivard, one of the lawyers with the group.

“Instead of letting them live in a terrible situation without a future, we wanted to do something for them, as they wanted to do something for Edward Snowden.”

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