FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 16th 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MEDIA ADVISORY                                                              DATE: June 16th, 2008

In solidarity with local environmental activist groups, Greenpeace Canada, will urge the City of London to lead on climate change by imposing Canada’s first moratorium on all new drive-thrus.

In a campaign launched by Maude Barlow’s Council of Canadians | London Chapter, the issue on a drive-thru moratorium has quickly become a hot topic across the nation.  Today the industry launched a glossy campaign in an attempt to ‘put out fires’ on an issue that garners more and more support as climate change continues to accelerate out of control.  World experts call for an 80% reduction in emissions before the year 2050 if we are to avoid the worst consequences of global warming.

The debate will take place Tuesday, June 17th at 7pm at city hall.

Activists, students and citizens concerned about air pollution and climate change will hear a presentation by Bruce Cox, Executive Director of Greenpeace Canada.  Individuals will also hear representation from esteemed organizations such as CAPE (Canadian Physicians for the Environment) and the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction. Gordon McBean, appointed member of Mayor’s Sustainable Energy Council and  world renown climatologist for the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction urge the city to take action on all ways of reducing emissions as part of national and global efforts to combat climate change.

London currently has approx. 150 drive-thrus and many thousands of vehicles line up everyday spewing unnecessary pollution into the environment.

Environmentalists and Canada’s fast-food empires collided head-on at London city hall on May 26th, as politicians considered whether to limit or even ban new drive-thrus. At a public participation meeting of the city’s planning committee, Tim Hortons, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King and A&W served up a team of critics that included Ontario’s largest restaurant association, an engineering consultant and a lawyer who fought drive-through restrictions in Ottawa. Industry and the Tim Hortons’ study drew a heated rebuttle from the Council of Canadians and the London District Labour Council, both of which called for a moratorium on new drive-thus.

Statistics: Eight thousand people a day die from air pollution. There are 3 million annual deaths, worldwide. In Canada toxic emissions from transportation continue to rise drastically. Vehicles are the primary sources of nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, particulates and benzene, a carcinogen. In the past 15 years alone, there has been a fourfold increase in asthma in children under 15 in Canada. In fact, the Ontario Medical Association estimated that health care costs caused by poor air quality in 2000 would amount to nearly $630 million, not to mention the $566 million in costs due to workers taking sick days.

We are in a world wide public health crisis epidemic as a direct result of air pollution amidst a climate change crisis that threatens human survival on this earth – expanding services which promote unnecessary idling for convenience is not only reckless and irresponsible – it is the absolute opposite direction we need to be taking.

http://cleanairforchildren.blogspot.com/

For more information:

Cory Morningstar | President | London Chapter | Council of Canadians | Environment & Climate Change Committee councilofcanadians.london@sympatico.ca

Kevin Lomack | Membership Coordinator | London Chapter | Council of Canadians | Environment & Climate Change Committee | 519-872-0978

Bruce Cox | Executive Director | Greenpeace Canada | (416) 597-8408 Ext. 3012

http://www.canadians.org/

This Joint Call To Action Is Also Issued By The Following Organizations:

* Campaign for Clean Air in London’ [England]

* Campbell River, B.C. CoC Chapter

* Coquitlam Greendrinks British Columbia

* Deeper Shade of Green – British Columbia

* Fanshawe Social Justice Club

* Frank de Jong – Leader of Green Party Ontario

* Great Lakes United

* London and District Labour Council

* London Project for a Participatory Society

* London West NDP Riding Association

* LOVE – London Organization of Vegetarians for the Environment

* M E M E S – Movement of Environmental Minimalists Embracing Sustainability

* Maude Barlow – Council of Canadians – National Chairperson

* New Westminster B.C. CoC Chapter

* Peterborough – Kawarthas CoC Chapter

* Post Carbon London

* Regina SK CoC Chapter

* Surrey, Langley and White Rock CoC Chapter – British Columbia

* TREA – Thames Regional Ecological Association

* Waste Free World London

* Whistler B.C CoC Chapter

* Windsor CoC Chapter

The Advisory Committee on the Environment to the City of London also advises the city to impose a moratorium on new drive-thrus.

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