Air Canada helps raise awareness of Illegal Wildlife Trade in Canada with virtual forum
Mar 01, 2021

On March 3, Air Canada hosted a virtual forum on Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) in Canada’s Transportation industry. As the country’s largest airline, Air Canada’s goal was to raise awareness about the illegal wildlife trade in Canada and around the world.

The forum featured a host of prominent international speakers and subject matter experts, including:

- Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada

“Measures such as preventing the illegal trade in wildlife, and sustainability issues more generally, will be determining factors of our shared success in the post-pandemic future. I am proud that at Air Canada we have long recognized this because it is the right thing to do and we have acted accordingly. As part of our 10-year transformation we have made Corporate Social Responsibility central to our decision-making.”

- The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.

“Canadians greatly value our natural resources, and we recognize the critical importance of ensuring any use of natural resources is legal and sustainable. While most people follow the laws and regulations that conserve and protect wildlife and its habitats, those who do not, pose a real threat to the species and the ecosystems we all rely on. Wildlife crime is the fourth largest global crime as measured by dollar value. Canada is, like all countries, impacted by wildlife crime.”

- Dr. Jane Goodall

“I want to commend Air Canada. In addition to hosting this event, you became the first North American airline to attain the International Air Transport Association’s Illegal Wildlife Trade certification. And I certainly hope that many other airlines will follow your example. Every single one of the millions of animals involved in this trade every year is not just a statistic. Each one is an individual whose life has been so brutally sacrificed on the altar of greed and corruption. Each one of these animals can feel fear.”

Air Canada is the first airline of the Americas to receive the IATA Illegal Wildlife Trade certification. This certification demonstrates the incorporation of the commitments of the Buckingham Palace Declaration. The declaration, developed by the United for Wildlife transport taskforce, is designed to make it harder for poachers and others to ship their illegal products to markets where they can be sold for profit. This will help protect threatened and endangered species, support biodiversity and protect nature’s riches for future generations.

The full forum is available for playback on Air Canada’s Leaveless website.