July 25, 2024

Air Canada highlights the illegal wildlife trade

Air Canada is introducing an initiative to spotlight the illegal wildlife trade (IWT) and its impact on global biodiversity. In collaboration with the Jane Goodall Institute of Canada (JGIC), the awareness campaign will showcase animals endangered from IWT on the airline’s inflight entertainment welcome screens, social media and more during Earth Month (April) – including a message from Dr Jane Goodall.

Canada’s flag carrier has a zero-tolerance policy on carrying banned species, hunting trophies or products associated with illegal wildlife activities. Air Canada became a signatory to the Buckingham Palace Declaration in 2020. It was the first airline in the Americas to hold IATA IWT certification, which confirms policies and procedures to reduce the likelihood of illegal wildlife products being transported.

The airline is a member of United for Wildlife’s North America Regional Chapter, which debuted in 2022, and created IWT e-learning modules for all frontline employees and managers in its freight business, Air Canada Cargo.

To further support the Jane Goodall Institute of Canada‘s ongoing environmental and conservation work, Aeroplan will be launching a Points Match Week (April 22-28) beginning on Earth Day (April 22). All points donated by Aeroplan members will be matched at 100% by Aeroplan, with all proceeds going directly to the JGIC.

Air Canada is also becoming the first airline globally to showcase conservation documentaries from Age of Union, a non-profit environmental alliance that supports and makes visible a global community of changemakers working on the ground to protect the planet’s threatened species and ecosystems.

Dax Dasilva, founder of Age of Union is part of the Jane Goodall Legacy Foundation’s Council for Hope, a group of respected and influential individuals from the fields of conservation, science, business, government, media and the arts with a shared mission for protecting our planet and perpetuating Dr Goodall’s legacy as a force for good. 

Passengers can access these documentaries onboard Air Canada flights in a newly launched environment-focused film and TV category, Our Planet, in the airline’s inflight entertainment system. Beginning in April, customers will be able to watch The CorridorWe Are The St Lawrence RiverCAUGHT and further documentaries.

“Air Canada plays an important role in protecting biodiversity around the world and I’ve been proud to see Air Canada team up with the Jane Goodall Institute of Canada to bring more awareness to this issue. Their significant commitment to not only fighting the illegal wildlife trade through their policies and procedures but using their platform to educate on this very important issue is commendable,” said Bella Lam, Chief Executive Officer at the Jane Goodall Institute of Canada.

Valerie Durand, Head of Investor Relations and Corporate Sustainability at Air Canada, commented: “At Air Canada, our belief is while much of what we do to reduce our environmental footprint is about leaving less, we also need to do more to improve our planet’s fragile ecosystems. As a global airline, we can use our platform to bring more awareness to the illegal wildlife trade and how that affects overall biodiversity.”

Further details about Air Canada’s efforts to combat illegal wildlife trade and its environmental and sustainability programme can be accessed via the airline’s website.