Canadian Medical Association

Canadian Medical Association

April 27, 2007 12:11 ET

Government's Environment Plan Moves Canadians Further Along the Road to Better Health, Says Canada's Doctors

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - April 27, 2007) - The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) said it was optimistic that the targets and timelines announced by the federal government will move Canadians further down the road to better health.

"Canada's doctors are well aware of the effects that poor air quality can have on the health of our patients," said CMA President Dr. Colin McMillan. "That's why we believe any measures taken now to improve air quality, will have a positive impact on the health of Canadians now and in the future."

Canada's doctors continue to be concerned about the health impacts of climate change and smog pollution. CMA supported Canada's ratification of the Kyoto Protocol and believes strongly that the faster we move to reduce greenhouse gases, the better for the health of Canadians.

CMA is also concerned about the well-proven and immediate impact of smog pollution on the cardiac and respiratory health of our patients across the country. Canada's doctors cannot ignore the current smog threat and will support meaningful actions to reduce these pollutants.

The establishment of real targets in four areas-nitrogen oxides (NOx), Sulphur oxide (SOx); volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and particulate matter (PM) is welcomed by the Association. As will be the establishment of firm targets for action.

"As physicians, we predominantly view these policies through a health filter. While we congratulate government for their focus on healthier air we breathe," Dr. McMillan concluded, "we must ensure that real pollution reductions occur and that the health benefits are realized as soon as possible"

The real measure of success, however, will be a reduction in the overall burden of diseases associated with pollution and climate change. Physicians will play an active role with other health stakeholders in examining the impact environmental change can have on health and in monitoring air pollution across Canada. CMA also intends to work with government to accelerate progress on meeting targets and to report that performance publicly.

Contact Information

  • Steve Wharry
    1-800-663-7336 x2135 or 613-731-8610 x2135