White flags key to clean-air campaign


Staff member
Feb 15, 2004
The Beach Strip
Posted with permission from the Hamilton Spectator.

Andrew Baulcomb
The Hamilton Spectator
(Jul 2, 2010)
Residents along Hamilton's Beach Strip and several east-end neighbourhoods have begun a simple campaign to fight emissions.

Throughout the summer months, residents and businesses in Crown Point and along the Beach Strip will be hanging white flags outside their buildings. It's expected the longer the flags hang, the more discoloured they will become owing to air pollution.

"We already have people saying, 'Where can I get a flag?' " said Katie Stiel, a campaign co-ordinator with Environment Hamilton, a nonprofit advocacy group.

"The flags will be supplied by us, and volunteers will be sewing and gluing them together. We'll also be the ones canvassing the neighbourhoods and distributing them."

The Crown Point and Beach Strip areas will be covered first, including homes and businesses near Centre on Barton (formerly Centre Mall) and along Barton Street East.

The white flag campaign was modelled after a similar project by Italy's Legambiente (Environmental League).

Stiel said particulate matter in the air is the most common type of pollution in the city's north and east ends, caused by heavy traffic and industry in the area.

Several libraries, the East Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club and the Eva Rothwell Centre have signed on to take part in the white flag campaign.

"Even for those of us who display a Canadian flag at home, within a few days it's tarnished," said Ward 4 Councillor Sam Merulla. "It begs the question, 'Why does this happen so quickly in certain parts of the east end?'"

Merulla said that several "rogue" industries continue to be a leading source of air pollution in Hamilton.

"They know who they are, and our objective is to expose them for who they are. We'll be watching, and we'll be exposing them as we go along."

Merulla, along with Mayor Fred Eisenberger and Ward 3 Councillor Bernie Morelli, helped sponsor the new white flag campaign.

"In the east end, air quality has been an issue for a number of years," Merulla added.

On a broad level, Stiel said she's hoping to raise awareness and highlight the overall quality of air in various Hamilton neighbourhoods.

"We're really promoting that community spirit, and it doesn't take much to get on board and show your support for cleaner air."




Nov 8, 2006
Beach Boulevard
Get a White Flag

This is the information Handbook about the white flag campaign- where to pick yours up and how to take part as well as information on particulate matter and how the campaign will work. Please join in!!

Note; The handbook has been remove to preserve space, if anyone requires this please contact Scotto.
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