Solid Waste & Recycling

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Air Canada sponsors shoreline cleanup


MONTREAL – More than 345 volunteers including Air Canada employees took part in the first Air Canada-sponsored public cleanup in Canada on Sept. 22 at British Columbia’s Garry Point Park.

In the span of a few hours, volunteers removed from the shoreline:

  • 29 plastic cups
  • 1374 styrofoam pieces
  • 48 plastic bottles
  • 173 bottle caps
  • 481 plastic bags
  • 32 plastic cutlery pieces
  • 159 straws
  • 931 cigarette butts
  • 1 tire
  • 1 car bumper
  • 2 lawn chairs

“We commend the participants who came together and braved the rain to achieve these results, leaving another community ocean shoreline in better condition,” said Teresa Ehman, senior director, environmental affairs at Air Canada.

“Air Canada’s environment commitments include reducing its use of single-use plastics and as part of a multi-pronged strategy, we have partnered with 4ocean, an organization which seeks to reduce plastic and trash pollution in oceans around the world.”

Air Canada has also identified all single-use plastics items used onboard flights to determine whether each single-use plastic item is truly necessary and whether there’s a more sustainable alternative or a possible change in process that would result in using less plastic.

So far, Air Canada has said #BonVoyagePlastic to 36.8 million single-use plastic items in 2019 by switching from plastic stir sticks onboard flights to sustainable wood ones, phasing out the plastic wrap from its amenity kits and removal of plastic from children’s packs.

In 2019, 4ocean cleanup events sponsored by Air Canada were completed in Florida where many of its US-based employees are located, and in Richmond, British Columbia, home of the airline’s primary trans-Pacific hub.

Drawing from their years of experience, 4ocean will also participate with the Air Canada team to develop educational resources on ocean conservation. To date, 4ocean has removed more than six million pounds of trash from the ocean and coastlines.