Canada’s environment minister has encouraged G7 leaders to do more to cut the use of single-use plastics and tackle the pollution of our oceans.
Catherine McKenna spoke to Sky News on the sideline of the G7 summit in Quebec where she said plastic pollution was a “huge issue” for Canada, which has 20% of the world’s coastlines and three oceans.
She added: “When you look at what we’re seeing, the amount of litter in our oceans, it’s appalling.
“The equivalent of one dump truck every minute of plastic waste going into our oceans, huge garbage patches the size of France, we absolutely need to take action and we think it’s really important that we show leadership here.”
Her words support Sky’s Ocean Rescue campaign, which encourages people to reduce single-use plastics.
In May, she told Canadian press that she would be considering a zero plastics waste charter, saying this could go further than the European Union’s plan to recycle at least half of plastic packaging by 2030.
She told Sky News: “Oceans know no borders, the same with climate change.
“We need to be working together, bringing in not just governments – because often there’s a focus on governments – but you need to be bringing in industry when you’re talking about plastic pollution because we’re talking about what materials we’re using.
“You need to be bringing in cities and of course you need to be bringing in people.
“All around the world people are standing up an saying: enough. Enough plastic pollution.
“It’s hurting fishermen, it’s hurting people who are like me – I love diving, I love being in the water, I’m a swimmer.
“It’s also hurting the animals that rely on the oceans.
“We’re also losing the value, that’s the other side of it – the environment and the economy go together, we lose the equivalent of CA$150bn a year when we just throw out single use plastics.
“So we can do better and that’s what we’re really pushing here.”
:: Sky’s Ocean Rescue campaign encourages people to reduce their single-use plastics. You can find out more about the campaign and how to get involved at www.skyoceanrescue.com