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University of Guelph
50 Stone Rd E, Guelph, ON, N1G 2W1
Tel: (519) 824-4120

1087 - 6/1/2021 10:09:44 AM  

The Government of Canada invests in plastics science research at University of Guelph to further understand environmental threats

For Immediate Release - May 31, 2021 

“Plastics provide an opportunity to redefine waste as a resource, a resource that is  wasted when it goes to landfill. Keeping plastics circulating in the economy makes good  economic sense, in addition to reducing the impact plastics have on the environment when they go to waste. Congratulations to Dr. Ryan Prosser and the U of G for  continuing to improve life now and for future generations.  - Lloyd Longfield, Member of Parliament for Guelph 

Plastics are polluting our rivers, lakes, and oceans, and harming the wildlife that call  those places home. That’s why the Government of Canada is committed to achieving  zero plastic waste by 2030, including by moving towards a more circular economy and  banning certain, harmful single-use plastics, where warranted and supported by  science.  

Today, Lloyd Longfield, Member of Parliament for Guelph, highlighted that the  Government of Canada is providing $999,400 to the University of Guelph for research  into the risk of microplastics to Canada’s ecosystem. This is part of the $7M announced  earlier today to support seven science-based plastics research projects across the  country.  

These projects aim to close gaps in our knowledge and improve understanding of the  threats posed by plastic pollution. Information generated by research scientists is vital to plastics policy development and to making evidence-based decisions in our ongoing  effort to protect wildlife and our waters, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and create  jobs. 

The first-of-its-kind project, led by Dr. Ryan Prosser at the U of G, will assess potentially  harmful impacts of microplastics (particles less than 5 millimetres in size) on crop plants  and on organisms ingesting the material in soil and water – information that will help  governments and policy makers target ways to lessen contamination risks. 

“It is tremendous that Dr. Prosser’s crucial work to protect our water and soil has been  supported by NSERC. This is an excellent example of the ways in which U of G  researchers generate knowledge and transform that knowledge into positively impactful  innovations that address matters of critical global concern and thereby improve life.”  - Dr. Malcolm Campbell, vice-president (research), University of Guelph  

This funding is provided through the Plastics Science for a Cleaner Future Initiative,  supported by Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Natural Sciences and  Engineering Research Council of Canada, and is in alignment with Canada’s Plastics  Science Agenda and the Science Assessment of Plastic Pollution. This is an important  piece of Canada’s comprehensive Zero Plastic Waste agenda

Canada is taking action to protect the environment and reduce plastic pollution across  the country with a comprehensive approach. It includes moving toward a circular  economy that keeps plastic in the economy and out of the environment through  activities such as better product design, higher rates of repair, remanufacturing,  recycling, advancing science and community actions, and a ban on certain, harmful  single-use plastics.  

By following the science to improve how we manage plastic and by investing in  innovative solutions, we can reduce 1.8 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per  year and create approximately 42,000 jobs across the country. 

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The University of Guelph offers Bachelor’s degrees, Master’s degrees, PhD (Doctorate) degrees, diplomas and certificates, post-graduate diplomas, distance education, and co-op programs.

The University of Guelph main campus covers 330 hectares (817 acres) in the city of Guelph (an hour’s drive West of Toronto), with a mix of classic and modern architecture. It has one of the largest and best residence systems in Canada, with a variety of living options for students and 16 different dining venues. There is excellent public transportation around Guelph; the city also has many bike lanes and bike trails and cycling is supported on campus as well.

In partnership with Humber College, the University of Guelph-Humber offers additional courses through the Humber College campus in Toronto. The Ontario Agriculture College has a satellite campus, Ridgetown in southwestern Ontario offering diploma, certificate and apprenticeship programs.


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