Welcome!

News Feed Item

High consumption and throwaway habits make Canada an environmental laggard

OTTAWA, Jan. 17, 2013 /CNW/ - Canada throws away more garbage per capita than any other country in the developed world. That, combined with heavy usage of energy and water, gives Canada a 'C' grade and a ranking of 15th out of 17 countries in The Conference Board of Canada's How Canada Performs-Environment ranking.

 
HIGHLIGHTS
Canada, Australia and the United States, the three lowest ranking countries, share similar characteristics of large land area and resource-intensive economies.
Several of Canada's dismal results are due to overconsumption.
Canadians use more than nine times the water per capita that Denmark does.


"Our large land mass, cold climate and resource-intensive economy make us less likely to rank highly on some indicators of environmental sustainability, but many of our poor results are based on our inefficient use of our resources," said Len Coad, Director, Director, Energy, Environment and Technology Policy. "Canada must promote economic growth without further degrading the environment. Encouraging more sustainable consumption is crucial to achieve that objective."

A 15th place ranking, the same as in 2009, place Canada ahead of only Australia and the United States. These three countries are similar: they are three largest countries in terms of land area, and they are the most resource-intensive economies in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Canada does show some excellent environmental results. Forests are generally well-protected and well-managed. Air quality has improved modestly, energy use per person is down and water quality is still high.

But several of Canada's dismal results are due to overconsumption. In addition to generating the most waste, Canadians' water withdrawals are nearly double the average of the other countries and are lower only than the United States. And despite some improvement, Canadians are still the largest users of energy in the developed world.

Waste: In 2009, Canada generated 777 kilograms of municipal waste per capita - the 17 country average was 578 kg. Most of the waste goes to landfills or incinerators - of the 34 million tonnes generated in 2008, 26 million went there for disposal.

Energy: Canada's energy use is a mixed picture. Canadian greenhouse gas emissions per capita in 2010 earned a "D" grade, likely because of increased exports of natural resources. Yet GHG emissions per capita fell by almost five per cent between 1990 and 2010. Similarly Canada ranks 17th and last for the highest level of total energy consumption, but energy intensity decreased by almost 20 per cent between 1990 and 2009.  And Canada improved the share of its electricity produced by nuclear and renewable sources (mostly hydroelectric power) from 72 per cent in 2000 to almost 78 per cent in 2011.

Air quality: Canada's performance on all four air quality indicators in this analysis improved between 1990 and 2009. Yet, compared to most other countries, Canada still emits higher levels per capita of nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Water: At a glance, Canada enjoys abundant and safe water. For example, Canada earns an 'A' grade for water quality and ranks 4th on this indicator. Yet, regions such as the Prairies, southern Ontario and southern Quebec have water quality concerns, due in part to municipal water discharges (still, despite upgrades, one of the largest sources of pollution in Canadian waters). Furthermore, Canada's water withdrawals are nearly double the 16-country average, and Canadians use more than nine times the water per capita that Denmark does.

Forest management: Canada is a top performer in its forestry practices. Canada gets an 'A' grade and ranks second only to Japan on use of forest resources, and earns a 'B' grade for its change in forest cover between 2005 and 2010.

Biodiversity: Canada gets an "A' for the proportion of threatened species as a share of all species. Nevertheless, the number of species at risk in Canada is increasing, although federal biodiversity action plans have been prepared for the agriculture and forestry sectors. In contrast, Canada's Marine Trophic Index declined between 2000 and 2006, so Canada gets a "D" grade and ranks last on this indicator. The Marine Trophic Index is a measure of the extent to which a country is fishing for smaller species that are further down the food chain, so it measures the overall level of depletion of fish stocks.

How Canada Performs is a multi-year research program at The Conference Board of Canada to help leaders identify relative strengths and weaknesses in Canada's socio-economic performance. The How Canada Performs website presents data and analysis on Canada's performance compared to 16 peer countries in six performance categories: Economy, Innovation, Environment, Education and Skills, Health, and Society.

SOURCE Conference Board of Canada

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes a lot of work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reduction in cost ...
For financial firms, the cloud is going to increasingly become a crucial part of dealing with customers over the next five years and beyond, particularly with the growing use and acceptance of virtual currencies. There are new data storage paradigms on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive financial data around the world without touching terrestrial networks. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Cliff Beek, President of Cloud Constellation Corporation, d...
Deep learning has been very successful in social sciences and specially areas where there is a lot of data. Trading is another field that can be viewed as social science with a lot of data. With the advent of Deep Learning and Big Data technologies for efficient computation, we are finally able to use the same methods in investment management as we would in face recognition or in making chat-bots. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Gaurav Chakravorty, co-founder and Head of Strategy Development ...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
Vulnerability management is vital for large companies that need to secure containers across thousands of hosts, but many struggle to understand how exposed they are when they discover a new high security vulnerability. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, John Morello, CTO of Twistlock, will address this pressing concern by introducing the concept of the “Vulnerability Risk Tree API,” which brings all the data together in a simple REST endpoint, allowing companies to easily grasp the severity of t...
The goal of Continuous Testing is to shift testing left to find defects earlier and release software faster. This can be achieved by integrating a set of open source functional and performance testing tools in the early stages of your software delivery lifecycle. There is one process that binds all application delivery stages together into one well-orchestrated machine: Continuous Testing. Continuous Testing is the conveyer belt between the Software Factory and production stages. Artifacts are m...
Recently, WebRTC has a lot of eyes from market. The use cases of WebRTC are expanding - video chat, online education, online health care etc. Not only for human-to-human communication, but also IoT use cases such as machine to human use cases can be seen recently. One of the typical use-case is remote camera monitoring. With WebRTC, people can have interoperability and flexibility for deploying monitoring service. However, the benefit of WebRTC for IoT is not only its convenience and interopera...
There is only one world-class Cloud event on earth, and that is Cloud Expo – which returns to Silicon Valley for the 21st Cloud Expo at the Santa Clara Convention Center, October 31 - November 2, 2017. Every Global 2000 enterprise in the world is now integrating cloud computing in some form into its IT development and operations. Midsize and small businesses are also migrating to the cloud in increasing numbers. Companies are each developing their unique mix of cloud technologies and service...
Cloud resources, although available in abundance, are inherently volatile. For transactional computing, like ERP and most enterprise software, this is a challenge as transactional integrity and data fidelity is paramount – making it a challenge to create cloud native applications while relying on RDBMS. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Claus Jepsen, Chief Architect and Head of Innovation Labs at Unit4, will explore that in order to create distributed and scalable solutions ensuring high availa...
Connecting to major cloud service providers is becoming central to doing business. But your cloud provider’s performance is only as good as your connectivity solution. Massive Networks will place you in the driver's seat by exposing how you can extend your LAN from any location to include any cloud platform through an advanced high-performance connection that is secure and dedicated to your business-critical data. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Paul Mako, CEO & CIO of Massive Networks, wil...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
As businesses adopt functionalities in cloud computing, it’s imperative that IT operations consistently ensure cloud systems work correctly – all of the time, and to their best capabilities. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Bernd Harzog, CEO and founder of OpsDataStore, presented an industry answer to the common question, “Are you running IT operations as efficiently and as cost effectively as you need to?” He then expounded on the industry issues he frequently came up against as an analyst, and ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that App2Cloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. App2Cloud is an online Platform, specializing in migrating legacy applications to any Cloud Providers (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud).
In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Kelly Looney, director of DevOps consulting for Skytap, showed how an incremental approach to introducing containers into complex, distributed applications results in modernization with less risk and more reward. He also shared the story of how Skytap used Docker to get out of the business of managing infrastructure, and into the business of delivering innovation and business value. Attendees learned how up-front planning allows for a clean sep...
Blockchain is a shared, secure record of exchange that establishes trust, accountability and transparency across supply chain networks. Supported by the Linux Foundation's open source, open-standards based Hyperledger Project, Blockchain has the potential to improve regulatory compliance, reduce cost and time for product recall as well as advance trade. Are you curious about Blockchain and how it can provide you with new opportunities for innovation and growth? In her session at 20th Cloud Exp...