October 15, 2007

Canada's environment industry continues to show healthy growth

Canada's environment industry maintained a healthy rate of growth in 2004, as indicated by the latest available data from Statistics Canada. companies providing environmental goods and services earned a total of $18.5 billion in 2004, up almost 17% over 2002 revenues of $15.8 billion.

Revenues from the sales of environmental services alone showed an increase of over 20% during this period, from $7 billion in 2002 to $8.4 billion in 2004. All types of environmental services reported higher revenues, with waste management and remediation accounting for two-thirds of all environmental service revenues in 2004. Environmental education, training and information was the sole area not showing higher revenues.

Sales of environmental goods, including construction, rose from $8.8 billion to $10.1 billion between 2002 and 2004, an increase of 14.8%. Firms in the wholesale trade sector (mainly recyclable materials) accounted for roughly half the 2004 total, reporting over $5.3 billion in sales. This increase, notes the StatsCan report, reflects substantial increases in market prices for raw materials such as metals and minerals.

Companies providing goods related to water supply, treatment and conservation earned a total of $3.4 billion in 2004. This includes the construction of facilities such as water treatment plants and pumping stations, water distribution mains, sewage treatment and disposal plants, and sanitary and storm sewers.

Air pollution control technologies constitute a small but growing environment industry sector, says StatsCan. Its growth jumped by almost 29% from 2002 to 2004, with revenues rising from $521.2 million to $671 million. This sector includes catalytic converters, emissions recovery systems, and equipment for air filtration and emissions monitoring.

In a related area, revenues from goods and services to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions rose by 24% during this period, totalling $771.6 million. This sector includes the manufacturing or servicing of renewable energy systems (e.g. wind turbines, solar systems, small-scale electricity) and products that reduce energy consumption.

Growth in the environmental consulting sector was notably healthy, with revenues for firms in this sector showing a 25% increase, from $645.3 million in 2002 to $806.4 million.

Companies involved in hazardous and non-hazardous waste management also reported increases in revenues for all environment-related production, from $3.7 billion in 2002 to $$4.2 billion in 2004, a growth of 12.6%.

Canada's environment industry exported $1.5 billion worth of goods and services in 2004, with export markets providing 8.1% of the industry's total revenues in 2004. The U.S. remained the leading export market, accounting for $1.2 billion in export revenues, followed by Europe ($110 million) and Asia ($102 million).

The Environment Industry: Business Sector report (No 16F008XIE) is available in the Publications section of the StatsCan Web site, www.statcan.ca.

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