RNAO marks Earth Day with a call to action: Ban fossil fuels ads

April 22, 2024

Nurses know the environment is an important determinant of health.  The air we breathe must be clean and not full of noxious pollutants.

This year, RNAO is marking Earth Day by joining a campaign initiated by the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment (CAPE) to ban fossil fuel advertising across Canada.

Many Canadians aren’t aware of the indirect and direct health effects of burning fossil fuels. They are responsible for the dramatic climate change we have witnessed across Canada such as heat waves and wildfires. They lead to poor health and they can kill. Burning fossil fuels is one of the leading causes of premature mortality in Canada. Children who live in homes with gas stoves face a similar risk of developing asthma to children who live with smokers. 

The danger is right in our backyard. The Carbon Majors Database ( links 80 per cent of the world’s global greenhouse gas emissions to just 57 oil, gas, coal and cement producers – many with a footprint in Canada.

The campaign to ban fossil fuel advertising is patterned on previous advocacy that led to the ban on advertising tobacco. Efforts shows signs of success. In February, supporting CAPE – Charlie Angus, MP for Timmins-James Bay, tabled Bill C-372, the Fossil Fuel Advertising Act, which aims to “prevent the public from being deceived or misled with respect to the environmental and health hazards of using fossil fuels,” and to “enhance public awareness of those hazards.”

RNAO and its Ontario Nurses for the Environment interest group have also joined CAPE and its advocacy in support of the advertising ban tabled by MP Angus’s Bill C-372.

Join the campaign

Let’s do everything we can to raise awareness by writing to the prime minister and  urging him to ban fossil fuel advertising.