Is Canada a third world country? This question at first glance may appear obvious; however, if you look at our environmental impact it becomes clear we are slipping from grace and into disaster. The problem is growing faster than our mindsets are changing. Unfortunately the public and the Government are in denial. Canadians seem to think if there is an abundance of something it can be wasted. This conception is dangerous and unhealthy. Canada is not doing nearly enough to improve the environment.
The largest shameful and damaging aspect of our denial is demonstrated by how our nation treats our water. Water is an extremely essential substance for humans and life as we know it. If Canada lost all its’ fresh water, our society simply could not survive. Regardless of these basic truths Canadians treat our vast amounts of water as though it could not be polluted. The water supply is becoming more polluted every year.
Our nation dumps one hundred and fifty billion litres of raw sewage into waterways every single year (Souza, 2012). This is deadly; unclean water at this magnitude is a spawning ground for bacteria and deceases. Not to mention destructive for aquatic habitats. The full consequence of this cannot be fully understood until you put into consideration what else is in human waste. There is potential for synthetic chemicals from medicine, plastic containers, and cosmetics.
According to Statistics Canada, Nitrate and ammonia are released into the water at over 50,000 metric tons each per year (2013). These pollutants are particularly disconcerting. Nitrates are toxic in high doses and Ammonia causes respiratory ailments in its gaseous state (“Nitrates” n.d.; “Ammonia” 2008). If contaminated water evaporates, the Ammonia gas could cause children and unhealthy adults with existing precondition to develop breathing problems.
Canada needs to modernize its’ sewer system, so it can process its’ biological waste more appropriately. There should be filtering plants before any waste water is dumped back into our waters. There should also be more regulation of industries to lower contaminants. Industries of higher risks include agriculture and mining.
Another place Canada is in denial is with landfills. According to a recent study, Canada produces a staggering 777 kilograms per capita more than double the rate of the lowest country in the study Japan (CBCnews, 2013). Also the study found that we were the worst in that category and several others (CBCnews, 2013). This is an embarrassment to our nation. But to be fair to individual citizens the majority of this waste is produced by industries. Still, that is an abhorred excuse; the industries in Canada should not be that wasteful.
This problem is actually getting worse over time. Canada’s municipal waste generated per capita has been on a steady rise since 1990 (“Municipal Waste,” 2013). What can we do to solve this problem? Well the Canadian government should encourage economic growth in...