Environmental Defence Canada

33 Cecil Street, 1st Floor
Toronto, ON M5T 1N1
Executive Director: Tim Gray
Board Chair: Fatima Crerar

Charitable Reg. #:11883 0835 RR0001


Ci's Star Rating is calculated based on the following independent metrics:

[Charity Rating: 5/5]



Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity’s website.



Grade based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.



The demonstrated impact per dollar Ci calculates from available program information.


Charity's cash and investments (funding reserves) relative to how much it spends on programs in most recent year.



For a dollar donated, after overhead costs of fundraising and admin/management (excluding surplus) 91 cents are available for programs.

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About Environmental Defence Canada:

Environmental Defence Canada is a 5-star rated charity with best practice in financial transparency and strong accountability to donors as seen in the A results reporting grade. For every dollar donated to this charity, 91 cents go to the cause. This is within Ci's reasonable range for overhead spending.
Founded in 1984, Environmental Defence Canada (EDC) aims to protect Canada’s freshwater and land, decrease plastic pollution, and promote clean energy alternatives. EDC empowers individual Canadians, works with industry leaders, and advocates for new government policy to achieve these goals. The charity has five major programs: Climate and Clean Economy, Ontario: Yours to Protect, Freshwater, Plastic Pollution, and Toxic Chemicals. In F2022, 320,000 EDC supporters sent 175,000 calls and letters to governments and industry. This resulted in 12 key environmental protection wins. According to Environmental Defence Canada’s annual report, it spent $3.9m on its programs in F2022, although this includes overhead spending which is not disclosed on the charity's audited financials statements or on its T3010 filing with the CRA. 
Climate and Clean Economy: In F2022, EDC allocated 68% of its program costs to its Climate and Clean Economy program. This program focuses on Canada's transition toward more sustainable energy and transportation alternatives. EDC states that Canada will experience climate change twice as fast as other parts of the world, making it Canada's largest threat. In F2022, the charity blocked the government from increasing oil and gas production. EDC also produced Car Wars, a detailed report that outlines transportation emissions. Within the report, EDC highlighted the automobile industry's preference to sell and market gas-powered vehicles. The charity also disclosed that based on its research, fossil fuel subsidies are a major federal election issue.
Ontario: Yours to Protect: In F2022, EDC allocated 12% of its program costs to its Ontario: Yours to Protect program. The federal government approved EDC's request for a federal impact assessment of highway 413 in F2022. The request received the support of 22,000 citizens and 53 scientists. The charity states this highway will add 17 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, resulting in $1.4 billion in pollution damage. EDC also worked with community groups in Hamilton and Halton Ontario to stop sprawl and urban expansion in F2022.
Freshwater: In F2022, EDC allocated 9% of its program costs to its Freshwater program. In F2022, the charity published a report on why Canada does not need the Line 5 Pipeline. The charity reports that line 5 has leaked 29 times since 1953. EDC states that existing rail capacity could make up for the shortfall of supply. The charity reports that the Canada-Ontario Great Lakes Agreement included several of EDC’s recommendations. This is the ninth amendment to the agreement which was created 50 years ago.
Plastic Pollution: In F2022, EDC allocated 7% of its program costs to its Plastic Pollution program. In F2022, EDC led the effort to call on the government to take ambitious actions to reach its goal of zero plastic waste by 2030. The charity also led a plastic-free Twitter campaign in F2022 which involved 1,500 people.
Toxic Chemicals: In F2022, EDC allocated 5% of its program costs to its Toxic Chemicals program. In F2022, the charity testified before the senate to modernize the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA).

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Results and Impact

In F2022, the Federal Government finalized a ban for six single-use plastic items: bags, straws, cutlery, takeout containers, stir sticks, and six pack rings. The charity reports this law included its recommendation to ban exports of single-use plastics. The government estimates the ban will result in 1.3 million fewer tonnes of plastic waste produced and 22,000 tonnes of litter diverted from Canada's environment over a ten-year period.
In F2022, the federal government committed to ending new thermal coal mines and the export of thermal coal by 2030. The charity reports this is a key step in a fossil-free future for Canada.
Restaurant Brands International, which owns Burger King, Popeyes, and Tim Hortons announced it will ban toxic per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in food packaging globally by 2025. This follows EDC's multi-year campaign and investigation on the chemical. This ban eliminates PFAS consumption in 27,000 restaurants across 100 countries.
EDC sued the Government of Ontario over the unlawful use of a Minister’s Zoning Order (MZO) for proposed developments at Lower Duffins Creek Wetland. The Government of Ontario cancelled its MZO, saving Lower Duffins Creek Wetland. Despite this, the Government of Ontario issued more than 30 MZOs to fast-track development in 2020, the charity reports.
Canada introduced Bill S-5 as an update to CEPA after years of EDC campaigning. The bill provides stricter guidelines for the control of toxic substances and the right to a healthy environment. Federal government is required to consider the impact of toxins and their effect on vulnerable populations under this change. 
While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Environmental Defence Canada’s results and impact.
This charity is not yet rated on impact (n/r). 

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Environmental Defence Canada received $5.4m in donations in F2022. Administrative costs are 6% of revenue and fundraising costs are 3% of donations. This results in total overhead spending of 9%. For every dollar donated to the charity, 91 cents are available to go to the cause, which is within Ci’s reasonable range. Environmental Defence Canada's audited financial statements do not disclose fundraising costs. Audited financial statements and T3010 CRA filing do not disclose fundraising and administrative costs. Program, administrative and fundraising costs have been allocated by Ci based on line items in the charity's T3010 filing, thus they may not be accurate. 

The charity has $4.3m in reserve funds which can cover 127%, or one year and three months of its annual program costs.

Environmental Defence Canada uses external fundraisers as part of its fundraising activities. In F2022, EDC reported paying $22k to external fundraisers who raised $193k. This means EDC paid 11 cents for every dollar raised by external fundraisers.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Environmental Defence Canada for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on June 20, 2023 by Liam Chapleau.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
Administrative costs as % of revenues 6.0%4.9%11.8%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 2.7%9.5%5.7%
Total overhead spending 8.7%14.3%17.5%
Program cost coverage (%) 126.6%95.8%31.1%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 5,399,4094,204,1863,464,691
Government funding 0440,20562,425
Other income 32,62617,824(478,433)
Total revenues 5,432,0354,662,2153,048,683
Program costs 3,428,8142,513,0682,666,666
Administrative costs 326,782226,691360,854
Fundraising costs 145,457398,159197,863
Total spending 3,901,0533,137,9183,225,383
Cash flow from operations 1,530,9821,524,297(176,700)
Capital spending 5,71151,7690
Funding reserves 4,339,7682,407,417829,256

Note: Ci accounted for deferred contributions, impacting donations by $969k in F2022 and $1.0m in F2021. The charity did not disclose the source of deferred contributions in F2020, therefore deferred donations impacted other revenue by ($493k) in F2020. EDC reported government funding as a decrease to its expenses in F2021. Ci included government funding within revenue, increasing revenue and expenses by ($nil) in F2022, $440k in F2021, and ($nil) in F2020.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 37

Avg. compensation: $48,066

Top 10 staff salary range:

$350k +
$300k - $350k
$250k - $300k
$200k - $250k
$160k - $200k
$120k - $160k
$80k - $120k
$40k - $80k
< $40k

Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2022

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

In FY 2021-22, Environmental Defence had a number of staff changes which resulted in many of the 37 staff not being employed for the full year.  Consequently, the average compensation is not reflective of actual compensation.  If total compensation (including benefits) is divided by FTEs (27.02), average compensation is $65,830.67.

Updated on August 21, 2023

The charity added the following comments to a previous profile. New comments may be forthcoming.

Environmental Defence reports revenue on an accrual basis to match restricted programmatic revenue to the corresponding expenses.  Consequently, the reporting of our revenue on a cash basis does not accurately reflect the revenue of that fiscal or accurately match revenues and expenditures.

Environmental Defence seeks to achieve and report on program outcomes not on activity outputs. As a result, we do not believe that reporting on outputs accurately reflects our organization’s track record of success.

Updated on August 11, 2022

Environmental Defence’s donor strategy is focused on securing support from monthly donors. Since monthly donors typically continue to give to our organization for 5+ years, the revenue generated by these new monthly donors in the year acquired does not accurately reflect the total revenue that will be generated over that time against the fundraising costs incurred to acquire them in the current year. Consequently, the ratio of dollars paid for every dollar raised by external fundraisers is not accurate and greatly overstates the actual costs.

Updated on September 14, 2020

Charity Contact

Website: www.environmentaldefence.ca
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 416.323.9521


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001