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Bicycle Trade Association of Canada applauds new vehicle scrappage program

Monday, June 9th 2008 11:44:49am

Media Release
Attn: News, Environment, Assignment Editors and Reporters

Clearing the air one car at a time
BTAC applauds Canada’s new vehicle scrappage program

(Toronto, June 9, 2008).  The Bicycle Trade Association of Canada (BTAC) is very excited about the announcement of a new, nation-wide vehicle scrappage program, to be headed by the Clean Air Foundation.

Clean Air Foundation will work to partner with existing local scrappage programs to help Canadians get their old, high-polluting vehicles off the road and replace them with sustainable transportation such as bicycles. This is an important initiative in driving cultural change in how we think about how we move ourselves.

BTAC is evaluating a number of opportunities with its members – bicycle manufacturers, products suppliers, and retailers - to support Clean Air Foundation and enhance the program.  

“Anything that gets Canadians thinking about cleaner and healthier forms of transportation is terrific,” says Janet O’Connell, Executive Director of BTAC.  “The bicycle is by far the most efficient and healthy means to travel in urban areas. Riding as transportation reduces smog, eases congestion and improves health and fitness – it’s a triple win. With the right incentives and education we are confident that this program will get more Canadians on bicycles more often.”  

Clean Air Foundation’s Car Heaven program, which began as an Ontario based initiative in 2000, has already retired over 77,000 high polluting, older vehicles across Canada.  Last year alone, the Car Heaven program retired over 25,000 vehicles preventing the release of 1,300 tonnes of smog-forming pollutants, and over 13,000 tonnes of carbon monoxide into the atmosphere.

Currently, Car Heaven offers bicycle incentives through some retailers in Alberta. “We are looking forward to working closely with BTAC to expand these incentives nation-wide to get more Canadians out of their old cars and onto bicycles” says Ersilia Serafini, Executive Director of the Clean Air Foundation.  The new national vehicle scrappage program will be officially launched in January, 2009.

For more information, please contact:
Tina Siegel, e|c|o, 416.972.7401 or tsiegel (at) huffstrategy.com

The Bicycle Trade Association of Canada’s (www.btac.org) mission is to change Canadian culture by positioning cycling as the pre-eminent form of transportation and recreation in Canada.  A not-for-profit trade association whose members come from the retail and supplier sectors of Canada’s bicycle industry BTAC is the national voice for cycling BTAC actively advocates on critical issues with government at all levels and builds partnerships throughout the cycling community in Canada.  BTAC programs include Market Research, Cycling Advocacy, ExpoCycle (Canada’s Bike Trade Show) and many cost saving benefits to members.  BTAC was a key sponsor of the Toronto Bike Summit (http://www.torontocat.ca/main/bikesummit2008), and the convener of the Toronto Critierum at the St. Lawrence Market (http://www.torontocrtierum.com).

About Car Heaven
- www.carheaven.ca
Car Heaven operates across all Canadian provinces and offers potential donors the free tow of their retired vehicle (valued at up to $200), a charitable tax receipt from one of Car Heaven’s affiliated charities (minimum $50), and the guarantee that their old vehicle is recycled in an environmentally responsible manner. In addition, Car Heaven donors may be eligible to receive $750 towards the purchase of a new GM vehicle, free transit passes, discounted car-share program memberships and rebates on the purchase of bicycles. See www.carheaven.ca for more details.

About Clean Air Foundation
- www.cleanairfoundation.org
The Clean Air Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to developing, implementing and managing public engagement programs and other strategic approaches that lead to measurable emissions reductions, to improve air quality and protect the climate. The Foundation currently manages seven public engagement programs - Car Heaven™, Mow Down Pollution™, Keep Cool™, Go Solar, Switch the ‘Stat, Switch Out and Cool Shops™.