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The Problem

CCPC/Jillian Brown

Transport accounts for approximately one quarter of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada, second only to the oil and gas industry. According to the Government of Canada GHG inventory, “Between 1990 and 2021, GHG emissions from the transport sector grew by 27%. The growth in emissions was mostly driven by increases from freight heavy-duty trucks and passenger light trucks.”

CCPC/Jillian Brown

CCPC/Jillian Brown

Based on the National Inventory Report 1990-2021: Greenhouse Gas Sources and Sinks in Canada, the following is a breakdown of the transportation sectors in 2021 tracked by the government expressed as percentages of the total GHG emitted by the transport sector:

  • Aviation - 3%

  • Roads and Transportation - 61.7%

  • Railways - 3.6%

  • Marine - 2.3%

  • Other Transportation - 29.4%

CCPC/Ray Maichin

CROSSING PATHS-JillianABrownPhotography-2021-0249.jpg

CCPC/Jillian Brown

Climate change is increasingly responsible for the extreme weather events affecting wildlife and their natural habitats. 2023 was the worst year for wildfires in Canada with 6451 fires recorded, burning a total of 17,577,396 hectares as of Sep 26, 2023. Flooding and the resulting slides from more frequent and intense storms destroys habitat, creates barriers to migration, and may kill wildlife directly. Extreme drought conditions conversely reduce and remove water sources, devastate wild crops, and create impossible conditions for salmon migrations.

CCPC/Jillian Brown

Transportation in Canada is a major contributor to the national GHG emissions, which exacerbates climate change and therefore negatively impacts wildlife in the country. Through education and increased awareness of the environmental costs of transportation, we can make more conscientious choices about how we transit. Reducing travel when possible, taking public transportation, car-sharing, and utilizing low or zero-emission forms of transportation helps to minimize the effects of greenhouse gasses on the environment.

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