Vespa Says Beeeee-Beep to Climate Change



    First-ever national carbon neutral driving program creating a buzz across
    Canada

    TORONTO, June 17 /CNW/ - Canada's first national carbon neutral driving
program was launched today by Canadian Scooter Corp (Vespa Canada) and its
partners Environmental Defence and the Carbon Reduction Fund. Under the new
program, Vespa will offset the estimated greenhouse gas emissions for all new
Vespas, including the green-themed EnviroVespas in yellow (sun), blue (sky)
and green (grass).
    To celebrate the new program, the latest Vespas (the Italian word for
'wasp') from the land of love were joined this morning by their bee friends,
and a host of well-known admirers, in an outdoor oasis at Terroni Restaurant
in downtown Toronto.
    "Vespa Canada has just taken a quantum leap in making transportation fun,
affordable and most importantly, environmentally responsible," said Morey
Chaplick, Canadian Scooter Corp.
    The innovative carbon neutral driving program comes with a unique and
serious twist that's all about the birds and the bees: supporting the habitat
of wasps, bees, butterflies and other pollinators. To help its bee friends,
Vespa also announced that it will support the protection of pollinator habitat
through Environmental Defence.
    "Our riders 'get' the connection between a healthy planet and the
personal choices they make. Bringing together climate-friendly transportation
with helping to protect bees, wasps and other pollinators was a match that
made sense for us," said Chaplick.
    "With climate change the most important issue facing us today, Canadians
are looking for corporate leaders to step up and do their part," said Dr. Rick
Smith, Executive Director, Environmental Defence. "By helping to tackle
climate change and protect the places that bees, wasps and other pollinators
need to survive, Vespa is setting a tremendous example for other Canadian
companies to follow."
    Much of the food that we eat and nature that we enjoy is created by an
incredible relationship between flowers, trees, grasses, wasps, birds and
bees. North America received a significant scare last year as domestic bees
began dying in record numbers. The die-off touched off a long-overdue debate
about the unsung but vital role wasps, bees, butterflies and other pollinators
play in our environment and food supply. According to the U.S. Department of
Agriculture, while the causes and solutions to this complex problem are being
resolved, there is one thing we can all do to save our bees and other
pollinators: protect existing habitat and plant new habitat where pollinators
can thrive.
    "We applaud Vespa Canada in showing environmental leadership by not only
addressing the carbon footprint of their products, but in making a positive
contribution by raising awareness and making a positive contribution to the
issue of pollinator habitat," said Yvan Champagne, Managing Director, the
Carbon Reduction Fund. "Our goal at the Fund is to find high quality carbon
offset projects that not only reduce or sequester GHG emissions, but that also
make a positive environmental contribution."

    How the carbon neutral driving program works

    Vespa Canada, which has plans to release a new Hybrid Vespa, will offset
an estimate of 3 years worth of emissions for every Vespa sold in the
remainder of 2008, including the new EnviroVespas in green, yellow or blue. To
ensure appropriate carbon offsets, Vespa will purchase high quality verified
offsets from the Carbon Reduction Fund. To learn more about the Vespa carbon
neutral driving program, and the new EnviroVespa, visit www.envirovespa.com.
    The Toronto-based Canadian Scooter Corp, is the exclusive importer and
distributor of new Vespa and Piaggio motor scooters for Canada. For more
information and dealer inquiries, visit www.vespacanada.com.

    About Environmental Defence (www.environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental
Defence protects the environment and human health. We research solutions. We
educate. We go to court when we have to. All in order to ensure clean air,
clean water and thriving ecosystems nationwide, and to bring a halt to
Canada's contribution to climate change.

    About the Carbon Reduction Fund (www.carbonreductionfund.org): The Carbon
Reduction Fund is an independent, not-for-profit organization that engages
groups in developing GHG reduction projects. We supply high-quality offsets to
a select group of progressive organizations that take responsibility for and
take action on their carbon footprints and that voluntarily commit to
meaningful reductions of GHG emissions.

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/





For further information:

For further information: or to arrange interviews, please contact: Sue
Kuruvilla, Canadian Scooter Corp, (416) 537-3001 ext. 235; Jennifer Foulds,
Environmental Defence, (416) 323-9521 ext. 232, (647) 280-9521 (cell); Yvan
Champagne, Carbon Reduction Fund, (416) 847-3975 ext. 229


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