On June 14th, 2023, Canada made history by passing Bill S-5, the Strengthening Environmental Protection for a Healthier Canada Act. This groundbreaking legislation amends the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) to enhance regulations, increase transparency, and prioritize the health of both citizens and the environment. Additionally, it marks the first time the right to a healthy environment has been recognized under federal law .
As a company deeply committed to sustainability, Tillwell’s adoption of alkaline hydrolysis aligns with this progressive legislation’s goals. In this blog post, we will explore the key provisions of Bill S-5 and discuss how Tillwell’s environmentally conscious practices reflect the spirit of this landmark act.
Bill S-5: A New Era of Environmental Protection
Key Provisions of Bill S-5
Right to a Healthy Environment
“In nature, nothing exists alone.” – Rachel Carson
Bill S-5 recognizes the right to a healthy environment, requiring the government to protect this fundamental right. This provision underscores the importance of safeguarding our natural surroundings for the well-being of present and future generations.
Expanding the List of Toxic Substances
“The environment is where we all meet; it is the one thing all of us share.” – Lady Bird Johnson
The legislation expands the list of toxic substances subject to CEPA controls and restrictions, reinforcing Canada’s commitment to addressing environmental hazards and protecting public health.
Prioritizing High-Risk Substances
“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.” – Robert Swan
Bill S-5 prioritizes the prohibition of activities or releases involving high-risk substances, emphasizing the need for urgent action to mitigate environmental harm and protect ecosystems.
“We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.” – Native American Proverb
The legislation strengthens regulation-making powers to control substances and products that may release them. This ensures a more rigorous approach to managing potential environmental risks.
Vulnerable Populations and Cumulative Effects
“We have a responsibility to protect the rights of generations, of all species, that cannot speak for themselves today.” – Wangari Maathai
Bill S-5 mandates the consideration of vulnerable populations and cumulative effects when assessing substances. This ensures that environmental policies are equitable and account for the well-being of all members of society.
Enhancing Transparency and Public Reporting
“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.” – Rachel Carson
Enhanced transparency and public reporting requirements in Bill S-5 promote accountability and allow citizens to stay informed about environmental protection efforts, fostering trust and encouraging collective action.
Alkaline Hydrolysis: A Sustainable Solution
Alkaline hydrolysis, or aquamation, is a sustainable alternative to traditional cremation and burial practices. It uses water, heat, and alkaline chemicals to accelerate natural decomposition, reducing environmental impacts. By adopting alkaline hydrolysis, Tillwell aligns with Bill S-5’s focus on reducing toxic substances and promoting environmentally responsible practices.
Reduced Emissions and Resource Conservation
Aquamation generates fewer air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions than traditional cremation. This reduction supports Bill S-5’s goals of controlling substances that pose risks to the environment and human health. Additionally, aquamation is more resource-efficient, using less energy and producing less waste than conventional methods. This conservation of resources further aligns with the legislation’s emphasis on sustainable practices.
Consideration of Vulnerable Populations
Alkaline hydrolysis reduces air pollution, benefiting vulnerable populations who may be disproportionately affected by poor air quality. By adopting this technology, Tillwell demonstrates its commitment to considering the well-being of all members of society, aligning with Bill S-5’s focus on protecting vulnerable populations.
Transparency and Public Reporting
Tillwell embraces transparency and public reporting by sharing information about its sustainable practices, including the adoption of alkaline hydrolysis. This openness demonstrates Tillwell’s commitment to fostering trust and accountability, reflecting the spirit of Bill S-5’s enhanced transparency requirements.
Tillwell’s adoption of alkaline hydrolysis exemplifies the company’s dedication to environmental stewardship and aligns with the principles outlined in Canada’s Bill S-5. By embracing sustainable practices and prioritizing the well-being of people and the planet, Tillwell is doing its part to support a greener, healthier future for all Canadians.
- Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment. (2023). Bill S-5 Strengthening Environmental Protection for a Healthier Canada Act Received Royal Assent. Retrieved from https://cape.ca/bill-s-5-strengthening-environmental-protection-for-a-healthier-canada-act-received-royal-assent/