Breathe Easy

The environmental initiative, a sub-group of the Vehicle Emissions project, was aimed at reducing vehicle emissions to improve Alberta urban air quality.

Based on the B.C. Scrap-it program,  Breathe Easy was a pilot scrappage project run in Calgary. Project objectives were to:

  • remove high emitting cars from the road - reduce emissions
  • educate the public on emissions
  • assess public acceptance of a permanent program

The program:

  • tested the concept of reducing emissions by scrapping older vehicles
  • tested the effect of the communications activities on public response
  • had many contributors and stakeholders
  • targeted Calgary’s 100,000 older vehicles

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The Breathe Easy final report and recommendations was approved in March 2003.

RWDI West Inc. was retained to review, and report on, the effectiveness of the Breathe Easy pilot in reducing vehicular emissions in Alberta.

The Breathe Easy – Calgary Vehicle Scrappage Program operated in conjunction with the Calgary Kidney Car Program and Calgary Pick Your Part. Qualifying vehicles were completely recycled and scrapped at Calgary Pick Your Part according to environmental guidelines. It had several partners including Calgary Transit, the Alberta Clean Air Strategic Alliance (CASA), Calgary Motor Dealers Association, the federal and provincial governments and the Kidney Foundation.


Smart, easy ways to reduce vehicle emissions

"While cars are becoming lighter, more fuel-efficient and less polluting on an individual basis, the ever-increasing number of vehicles on the road reduces the benefits of improved technologies. In addition to this, more and more people are choosing sport utility vehicles which are currently in a category of vehicles with higher permissible emission levels than cars." – Environment Canada Fact Sheet

Find out more about how you can take personal action to reduce vehicle emissions in Calgary with quick facts, driving tips, and vehicle maintenance tips.

If you are in the market for a vehicle, find out about the new EnerGuide label for vehicles and which vehicle is the most fuel efficient in Canada.


Generous financial and in kind contributions from the following sponsors made the Breathe Easy – Calgary Vehicle Scrappage Pilot Program a reality.

Thank you to the following sponsors for supporting this great initiative!

  • Environment Canada
  • Climate Change Central
  • Alberta Environment
  • Calgary Transit
  • Calgary Motor Dealers Association
  • Canadian Petroleum Products Institute
  • The Kidney Foundation of Canada
  • Pick Your Part Automotive Recycling Group
  • Community Lottery Board, Calgary Grant Program
  • Alberta Motor Association
  • Alberta Registry Agents Association