Government of Canada is supporting Canadian families by protecting our
TORONTO, May 1, 2014 /CNW/ - Today, Minister Aglukkaq shared Canada's
accomplishments in improving air quality for Canadians through a
keynote address at the Asthma Society of Canada's Respiratory Health
and Environment Summit.
The Government of Canada is committed to keeping Canada's air clean and
continuing action on its strong record on air quality in Canada.
Building on this record, this summer Minister Aglukkaq plans to
announce more than $1.4 million in additional funding for clean air
projects to increase our understanding of clean air and climate change
Clean air is essential to Canadian families' health and quality of life,
and the economy. Many Canadians suffer from asthma and respiratory
illnesses and they will see the real benefits of better quality air.
The Government of Canada is working to maintain Canada's good air
quality, and to put in place measures to improve air quality on an
ongoing basis. Over the last two decades, Canada has made significant
progress in reducing emissions that cause smog and acid rain, which are
harmful to human health.
Environment Canada, in collaboration with Health Canada, has partnered
with provinces and territories, municipal governments, stakeholders
from industry, health, environmental and aboriginal organizations, and
local health authorities to develop and deliver the Air Quality Health
Index (AQHI) for communities across Canada. The AQHI is a public
information tool that helps Canadians understand what air quality means
to their health and make informed choices about their outdoor
Similar collaboration has also led to the development of the Canadian
Ambient Air Quality Standards (CAAQS), which help ensure that outdoor
air quality is improved and that good outdoor air quality is
maintained. The CAAQS are the first step in implementing the Air
Quality Management System (AQMS). The AQMS enables all levels of
governments to work collaboratively and efficiently to respond to the
different air quality challenges across the country. These standards
set objectives, based on health considerations, for outdoor air
concentrations of fine particulate matter and ground-level ozone, which
are the two major components of smog.
In September 2011, Canada's air quality was ranked second place out of
38 countries by the World Health Organization.
Since 1990, Canada's emissions of key air pollutants have decreased
considerably, some by more than half.
The Air Quality Health Index provides air quality information for 79
communities across Canada.
"Our government is committed to cleaner air for Canadians—for today, and
for future generations. We provide Canadians with first-rate
information on the quality of air we breathe, how to protect ourselves
from the effects of air pollution, and ways to reduce air pollution. We
will continue to work closely with our partners such as the Asthma
Society to make great strides in reducing air pollution."
- The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment, Minister
of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for
the Arctic Council
"The Asthma Society of Canada has enjoyed a strong partnership with the
Ministry of the Environment. Our collaboration on the Air Quality
Health Index in promoting public awareness of the health impact of poor
air quality is leading to a better quality of life for Canadians with
asthma and respiratory allergies. More importantly, the on-going work
that the Minister is promoting for cleaner air will lead to better
breathing for all Canadians."
- Dr. Robert Oliphant, President and CEO, Asthma Society of Canada
For more information and to view a backgrounder on this announcement,
please visit the Web site of Environment Canada.
Asthma Society of Canada's Respiratory Health and Environment Summit
SOURCE: Environment Canada
For further information:
Office of the Minister of the Environment
Environment Canada's Twitter page
Environment Canada's Facebook page