It’s almost Canada Day! And it only seems appropriate that we review some of the best things about our beloved country.
Canadians (clearly) take great pride in their hockey. We’re some of the friendliest people on the planet (this, according to most reports, but hey, we’re slightly biased!). We boast affordable healthcare and we’re beyond famous for Tim Hortons! And what about our eco-friendly efforts? Here are 10 fun facts about Canada’s commitment to creating a greener, more sustainable homeland for all its citizens.
1. Canada is clean! Seventy-nine percent of Canada’s electricity comes from eco-friendly, non-greenhouse gas emitting sources.
2. In the last five years, Canada installed more new wind energy generators as compared to all other forms of electricity.
3. In 2009, Prime Minister Stephen Harper and U.S. President Barack Obama launched the United States-Canada Clean Energy Dialogue to enhance collaboration from both nations on developing clean energy technology, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and battling climate change.
4. More and more Canadians are walking to work. In 2006, 5.7% of people walked to work; in 2011, 6.3% walked their commutes.
5. In 2014, regulations were put into place that will limit emissions from cars and small trucks built after 2016. By 2025, vehicle greenhouse gas emissions will be half of what they were in 2008.
6. Vancouver is one of the world’s greenest cities. The city, a world leader in hydropower usage, plans to cut its carbon emissions by 33 percent in the next five years.
7. The Montreal Tourism Board provides visitors with a geotourism map of the city so that they can develop their own eco-friendly itineraries, which can include visits to sites dedicated to sustainable development, festivals, urban agriculture, outdoor activities and bike trails and walking tours.
8. Way ahead of its time! More than 10 years ago, Calgary implemented a program to reduce per capita water consumption by 30 percent over 30 years. The 30-in-30 policy makes water meters mandatory and effectively reduces the average household’s water use by about 60 percent.
9. In Montreal, one man’s trash is another man’s art. Two environmentally-minded organizations got together and created an online database of waste. Artists can virtually browse the goods to see what they might need for their next masterpiece.
10. Canada’s Ministry of the Environment, Environment Canada, was established in 1971. Canada remains one of the few nations worldwide with this type of government entity. Environment Canada’s role is to assess, monitor and protect the environment, and to provide weather and meteorological information to keep Canadians informed and safe.