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Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email:

May 09, 2023

Statistics Canada has released results from the 2021 iteration of the Household and Environment Survey. This details use and type of air conditioning, parks/green spaces and outdoor activities

Air conditioning

In 2021, 43% of Nova Scotia households had air conditioning (41% in Halifax). This was below the national average of 64%.  Air conditioning was most prevalent in Ontario and Manitoba and least used in Newfoundland and Labrador. 

In Nova Scotia, 28% of households had air conditioning through a heat pump system while 13% had stand-alone air conditioning units.  Central air conditioning systems were the most common type of unit in Ontario and the Prairies while heat pumps were more common in Québec and the Maritimes.     

Parks and green spaces

In 2021, 81% of Nova Scotia households had access to a park or green space within 10 minutes travel from home.  This was higher in Halifax at 89% of households.  Access to parks and green spaces was lower in all Atlantic Provinces.

Of those who visited a nearby park or green space, 8% of Nova Scotians made daily use of them (11% of Haligonians).  Visiting the park at least once a week was reported by 27% of Nova Scotia households (32% of Halifax households).  Visiting the park at least once per month was reported by a further 27% of Nova Scotia households (25% of Halifax households) while visiting a few times per season was reported by 25% of Nova Scotia households (21% of Halifax households).  Infrequent visits ( a few times per year) were reported by 12% of Nova Scotia households (11% of Halifax households).

In addition to use of parks near the home, 61% of Nova Scotians in 2021 reported using parks further away from home (69% of Haligonians).  Use of more distant parts was most prevalent in Alberta and British Columbia and least prevalent in New Brunswick.  

Outdoor activities near the home

The 2021 Households and the Environment Survey asked Canadians about their participation in outdoor activities within 10 minutes of their home.  

In 2021, 78% of Nova Scotia households reported participating in outdoor activities close to home (81% in Halifax).  The national average was also 78% of households.  Participation in outdoor activities near the home was highest in British Columbia and lowest in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Walking was by far the most commonly-reported outdoor activity in Nova Scotia, followed by hiking, swimming/going to the beach and going to the park. 

There were regional differences in the choice of outdoor activities.  Boating, swimming and fishing were more prevalent in the Maritime provinces, while bicycling and going to parks/playgrounds were more common in central and prairie provinces.   

Source: Statistics Canada. Table 38-10-0019-01  Air conditionersTable 38-10-0020-01  Parks and green spacesTable 38-10-0121-01  Participation in outdoor activities

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