I love fall. The cooler nights. The vibrant colours of the leaves. It’s a season of change. Change is a funny thing. Sometimes it happens quickly like the leaves on a maple tree that seem to turn bright red overnight. Other times, change happens gradually, like the sun rising later in the morning as winter approaches.
At Environmental Defence, we take a long-term view on achieving our goals. We know that the hard work planting the seeds of environmental protection will eventually pay off. And as our new 2016 Annual Report shows, this year saw a lot of environmental victories – all thanks to you!
I want to thank you for your support along the way. We wouldn’t be celebrating so many wins without you! Thank you for attending events, and donating your time and money to make change happen.
In the meantime, here are a few examples of environmental battles won with your support.
For years, microbeads in consumer products like toothpaste fouled our lakes and rivers. We raised awareness about how these unnecessary plastic beads damage ecosystems, as their toxic chemicals build up in fish. This year, thanks to public outcry, the federal government declared microbeads toxic – a huge step forward. Now we’re working hard to ensure a ban is introduced. You can help by taking action here.
When it comes to protecting water, in Ontario we worked with three different provincial governments to encourage the passage of a strong Great Lakes Protection Act. Last October, the Act finally passed! Now we’re developing exciting new plans that will help farmers meet the Act’s mandatory nutrient reductions targets for the Great Lakes. This will benefit the fishing industry, tourism, farmers and the ecology of the Great Lakes. Want to get involved? Tell Ontario to introduce a deposit return system to reduce plastic waste and fund efforts that keep our waterways clean.
For years, we said that addressing emissions from the tar sands would enable climate action in Canada. This year Alberta announced a climate plan that includes a cap on tar sands emissions. Soon after, the federal government committed to building a new national climate plan that aims to meet its Paris commitments to keep temperature increases as close to 1.5 Celsius as possible. This is good news! But there’s more work ahead. Tell the federal government to keep its promise to become a climate leader.
And last but by no means least in the long list of victories, we worked with concerned citizens in Ontario to raise awareness about the risks of the proposed Highway 413, a redundant and expensive mega-highway project. This year the Ontario government announced a hold on the project! Now we’re working to ensure the proposal is cancelled outright.
It’s good to know that sticking to our priorities for the long-term pays off, benefiting the environment and the health and well-being of Canadians. We’re proud of what has been accomplished and excited about what’s ahead.
Want to be inspired? Check out our 2016 Annual Report today!
Want to power more environmental victories like the ones described above? Donate to Environmental Defence and help defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.