OTTAWA, June 5, 2013 /CNW/ - Canada's Minister of the Environment, the Honourable Peter Kent, issued the following statement to highlight Clean Air Day, which is being celebrated during Environment Week:
"Clean Air Day is a great opportunity to reflect on our Government's recent progress in protecting the air that we breathe so that all Canadians and their families can benefit and lead healthier lives. Our commitment to clean air is absolutely critical, not only for the well-being of our environment, but for the well-being of Canadians today and tomorrow.
"That is why the Government of Canada has been actively engaged, since 2010, in the development of a national Air Quality Management System to provide a comprehensive long term approach to improving air quality—and to allow all levels of government to work collaboratively and efficiently to respond to the different air quality challenges across the country.
"On May 24, our Government announced Canadian Ambient Air Quality Standards for fine particulate matter and ground-level ozone to do even more to improve outdoor air quality and to protect the health of Canadians' and Canada's environment for generations to come.
"Canada's air quality is among the best in the world and is improving—as was highlighted in the recently released 2012 Progress Report for the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy. Our Government intends to build on this progress and further our commitments to ensuring Canadians have clean air.
"Our Government's focus on the quality of our atmosphere goes well beyond ground level. We continue to make solid progress in the fight against climate change. As a result of our collective actions taken to date, Canada is already halfway toward closing the gap between what our emissions had originally been projected to be in 2020, and where we need to be to meet our Copenhagen target. Our sector by sector approach to regulating greenhouse gases is working, as our new rules for heavy-duty vehicles and engines and our world leading regulations on emissions from coal fired electricity plants are clearly demonstrating. Our Government is taking concrete action to address issues Canadians are concerned with today, to ensure we provide the Canadians of tomorrow a healthy environment in which to raise their families.
"On this year's Clean Air Day, I invite all Canadians to take the time to celebrate the environment, to reflect on our achievements and prepare for future challenges. Let us never lose sight of the importance that we as a country place on clean air and a strong, diverse environment in which to raise our families. By working together, we can all make a difference."
SOURCE: Environment Canada
For further information:
Mary Ann Dewey-Plante
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of the Environment
Environment Canada's Twitter page: http://twitter.com/environmentca
Environment Canada's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/environmentcan
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