As the holidays approach, it’s a good time to look back at what we’ve achieved together over the past year. And what a fantastic year it’s been! Recently, on our blog we’re been highlighting recent environmental victories your support made possible. For a more detailed list of victories, check out our 2016 Annual Report. In the meantime, here’s a snapshot of some of our work people like you made possible!
At Environmental Defence, we believe that every Canadian should be able to make their voice heard and contribute to solutions that will result in a safer and cleaner environment. That’s why we provide Canadians with opportunities to get involved and create positive change.
In the past year, over 25,000 of you raised your voices on issues that impact you, the health of your families and our shared environment. You signed petitions; you wrote or called elected officials or industry groups. You attended marches, lectures or workshops. On social media, you shared images and links calling attention to critical environmental challenges. Together, these efforts resulted in a suite of successes. And we can’t thank you enough!
The list of victories includes the federal government announcing a ban on microbeads that mirrors the U.S. phase-out of the harmful plastic bits; the Ontario government announcing a hold on developing Highway 413 and that the highway’s usefulness would be reviewed – a win for those concerned about the mega-highway’s threats to the Greenbelt, farms and communities. And Canada committing to a progressive climate plan at the UN Climate Summit (COP21) and in the spring signed the Paris Agreement. These successes would not have happened without you!
We’re proud of what we’ve achieved but there’s a lot more work ahead. Want to power more victories? Donate to Environmental Defence and help make more environmental victories possible!
Our Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) Canada program enjoyed another fantastic year! The program received a record number of entries in its national eco-journalism competition from youth across Canada who investigated and shared solutions to plastic pollution in their communities. First, second, and third place winners were invited to a YRE Winners’ Workshop in Toronto, where they learned about environmental issues and received mentorship from media professionals. First place winners competed in the international Young Reporters for the Environment Competition. Two Canadian entries placed in the top three in their categories. Congrats to Sarah Goodstadt from Oakville and Mymoon Bhuiyan from Scarborough on their international awards!
A NEW TOOL FOR TAKING ACTION
This spring we gave our website a new look designed to make it easier for Canadians to take action on environmental issues. With a focus on engagement, our new action-oriented website breaks down environmental issues into three sections – the problem, the solution and what Canadians like you can do to help. Our mobile-responsive petition pages make it simple to take action on-the-go. Our new website easily explains how you can get involved in building a cleaner, safer future for this generation and those to come.
This year, we continued our work on Ontario beaches to encourage conversations about beach safety. Sixteen hundred Ontarians participated in a survey on the importance of having clean and safe beaches for our families to enjoy. Sixteen hundred Ontarians learned about how Blue Flag certification guarantees that beaches with the designation are safe and clean. We compiled what we heard and shared it with municipal and provincial officials to promote and prioritize this program across the country. Our aim is to have as many Blue Flag certified beaches as possible so families know the beaches they visit are clean and safe.
We’re excited and looking forward to future opportunities to inspire deeper conversations with more Canadians on issues affecting our daily lives and our environment. Stay tuned for new ways to connect with us in person and online about environmental issues you care about
Want to help grow the movement of Canadians speaking out on critical environmental issues? Donate to Environmental Defence and help us engage more Canadians to raise their voices about protecting our shared environment.
Want to be inspired by more environmental victories? Check out our 2016 Annual Report.