Throughout the year many of you write to me and share your hopes for the environment. It always comforts me to find out that we share a common vision.

This holiday season the Ecojustice team and I want to offer you the same comfort and share our holiday wishes for the environment. Mine is for clean, safe air for all Canadians.

Each year in Canada, approximately 7,700 people die unnecessarily due to poor air quality. Cars and the burning and extraction of fossil fuels account for much of our air pollution.

I say that as a small-town prairie guy raised as a car enthusiast. Growing up, my favourite pastime was rebuilding engines. I even aspired to be an automotive journalist before becoming environmentally aware!

You don’t need to be an auto expert to know that it was wrong for Volkswagen to import and sell cars equipped with emissions-cheating software. The company put 105,000 vehicles equipped with these “defeat devices” on our roads ­— each capable of discharging up to 35 times the legal level of nitrogen oxides into the air. Nitrogen oxides are known to cause adverse, even fatal, effects on the respiratory systems of humans and animals.

Thanks to your support, we launched a lawsuit earlier this year to make sure government holds Volkswagen accountable for its fraudulent and unethical activities. It’s just one example of how the Ecojustice team is fighting to improve air quality in Canada.

In the coming weeks, you’ll be introduced to some of my colleagues — they are all excited to share their holiday wishes with you. Perhaps you’ll see your own hopes reflected in theirs.

But today, we’d love to hear from you. What’s your holiday wish for the environment?

Thanks for your support!

Devon Page, Executive Director

P.S. Ecojustice aims to raise $200,000 before January 1st to support this and other litigation and law reform efforts. When you donate this holiday season, you’ll help build the case for a better earth and turn our wishes into reality.