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We are a throwaway society

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Is that coffee cup you pick up every morning disposable?  How many times a day are you tossing away napkins, wrappers or water bottles?

A report card from the Conference Board of Canada ranks our country 15th out of 17 nations when it comes to the overall environment and we are at the very bottom of the list, dead last, when it comes to garbage.

Canadians throw away more per capita than anyone else in the developed world.  In 2009, we generated 777 kilograms of municipal waste per capita, that’s over one-third more than the average of the other countries looked at.  Most of it went straight to the landfill.

The fact we are a large, cold, resource-intensive country helps push us down the list along with over-consumption of water.

The Conference Board says, on average, we use double the amount of water as other countries and nine times the water used per capita in Denmark.

Fourteen indicators were used to crunch the numbers, including: air quality, waste, water quality, biodiversity, natural resource management, climate change and energy efficiency.