December 31, 2005, VANCOUVER – With a New Year about to begin, people often feel overwhelmed by all that’s going on around them. Cruelty to animals, vanishing species, global warming – the list seems almost endless. However, each one of us can take small steps in our daily lives to the make the world a better world for all of us, according to The Humane Society of Canada (HSC).


“With the world’s population approaching 6.5 billion people, even daily decisions like using disposable items, can have a huge negative impact on the Earth, “explains Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director. “On the bright side, even small environmentally-friendly acts, like using refillable pens, can have a significant positive influence on the planet.”

“Reduce, reuse and recycling will play an even greater role if we are to ensure that the Earth remains a reasonably healthy ecosystem,” says HSC Executive Director Michael O’Sullivan. “In this constantly changing, technological era, the amount of garbage being created by our species is staggering. Perfectly functional cell phones and computers, to name but two items, are routinely being discarded in favour of the latest model. We need to ensure that strict recycling measures are put in place so that all items that can be reused or recycled are,” says O’Sullivan.

He also asks people to remember that there is a proven link between cruelty towards animals and violence against people. “Kindness towards animals makes us better people,” he says.

What you eat is also important. Many people are reducing the amount of meat in their diet, asking more questions about the impact of factory farms on water quality, and purchasing organically grown foods.

How you get to where you’re going is another way to help the environment. “Deciding to leave your car at home, when you can walk, bike or roller blade improves your own health and the health of the environment,” says O’Sullivan.

The Humane Society of Canada is asking Canadians to start doing the little things that will result in a greener planet so that all species will have a brighter future.

Easy Ways to Protect Animals and The Earth:

  1. Reduce your energy consumption whenever possible. Use public transportation, use air conditioning only when necessary and wear sweaters at home, which may allow you to comfortably reduce the temperature in your home by a few degrees. Use alternative, greener energy sources like wind power and solar power whenever possible; many common household items like radios and exterior lights operate using solar power. Buy rechargeable batteries.
  2. If you are thinking about adopting a pet, please visit your local animal shelter or rescue group where thousands of dogs and cats are waiting for permanent loving homes.
  3. Educate yourself and others about the problems facing people, animals and the environment and do what you can in your own community to solve them.
  4. Be vigilant in practicing the 3 R’s – reduce, reuse, recycle.
  5. Use safe, non-toxic products whenever possible. Support companies that are environmentally friendly.
  6. Stop using unnecessary, toxic substances like herbicides and pesticides.
  7. Stop, or at least reduce, using disposable products. Don’t buy products that contain too much packaging.
  8. Support organizations that protect animals and the environment by donating money, time and your skills.
  9. Plant native trees, bushes, shrubs and flowers. Plant an organic vegetable garden.

“Remember that at the end of the day, all of the problems facing animals and nature stand on two feet. They will not be solved just by money and technology. Instead it will be the people who care, the people who make the sacrifices, the people who take the practical steps to get the job done. Every day people, just like you and me", concludes O’Sullivan.

CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at via twitter at and on Facebook at:

[For more than 17 years, Al Hickey was the Chief Executive of the BC SPCA and before that headed up the Alberta and BC Chambers of Commerce, and was the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Vancouver. He has been The HSC Western Regional Director for over 12 years. He has 4 children and 6 grandchildren. For his lifetime of achievement dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment, we have bestowed upon him our prestigious Heroes for Animals Award, shared by only a handful of people and organizations.

A father with two children, and a houseful of dogs and cats, Michael O'Sullivan has worked across Canada and in over 110 countries during the last 40 years helping people, animals and nature.]

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works to protect dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and small animals, livestock, lab animals, wildlife and the environment. We carry out hands on programs to help animals and nature, mount rescue operations, expose cruelty through hard hitting undercover investigations, work to pass laws to protect animals, use a multidisciplinary approach, support animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres, and spread the word about how to help animals and nature through humane education.

The only organization of its kind, seven days a week, The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works across the street, across Canada and around the world helping people, animals and the environment.

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) depends entirely on donations to support our programs to help animals and the environment. All donations are gratefully acknowledged with a receipt for income tax purposes. If you would like to support our educational campaigns that protect animals and the environment please make a donation here. Because when it comes to fighting cruelty and violence, we don’t give up. Ever.