Press conference: An investigation into the regulations for cruise ship pollution along the West Coast from California to Alaska

February 2, 2021

Feb 3, 10am PT: Canadian federal government must improve laws, regulations that protect coastal waters

When: Wednesday, February 3 at 10 am PT / 1 pm ET

Where: Online via Zoom. RSVP at:

What: While the Covid-19 pandemic has been a once-in-a-century global tragedy, one of its unforeseen impacts was a welcome reprieve for marine and coastal ecosystems from the gargantuan amount of cruise ship pollution that is discharged off the Pacific Coast of Canada each year. That reprieve may soon come to an end as Carnival Corporation and other cruise companies are preparing for business-as-usual in 2021. If it’s anything like 2019, more than a million passengers will arrive on dozens of voyages through the waters off BC on their way to and from Alaska, leaving in their wake more than 31 billion litres of inadequately treated cruise ship pollution laden with fecal coliform, ammonia, heavy metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons—pollutants that are harmful to human health, aquatic organisms and coastal ecosystems.

If Canada is going to lift restrictions and allow cruise ships to return in the post-pandemic era, the federal government must act now to improve the laws and regulations that protect coastal waters from massive amounts of cruise ship pollution. 

As this report illustrates, our coastal neighbors have led the way so far. The unique nature of Pacific coastal waterways and the sensitivity of these aquatic ecosystems call for even stronger protections before the cruise industry attempts to start up where it left off in 2019.

Who: This virtual press conference is hosted by and West Coast Environmental Law. Speakers include:

  • Anna Barford, Canada Shipping Campaigner at
  • Michael Bissonnette,  staff lawyer at West Coast Environmental Law
  • Dr. Judith Sayers, member of the Hupacasath First Nation and elected as the new president of the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council in September 2017

Instructions for media to join the Zoom event: Only the first 500 people who join will be able to participate via the interactive Zoom platform. Media are strongly encouraged to join by 10 am PT / 1 pm ET if you wish to participate via Zoom. 


Media contacts: 
Ziona Eyob, Canadian Communications Manager,, +1 (604) 757-7279 /
Alexis Stoymenoff, Director of Communications, West Coast Environmental Law, +1 604 684 7378 ext. 228 /