Go Green for April 2017: 4 Ways You Can Help Make Toronto Green
Written by Michelle Johannesson
Hey Toronto! April is Earth month, which means we’re working to #gogreen! The task of reducing your ecological footprint can be daunting, but there are many small changes you can make that have a big impact on Canada’s environmental health. By simply following the 4 tips below, you can participate in a movement to ensure Canada’s environmental and ecological wellness for generations to come!
1. Recycle Your Old Electronics
In today’s digital age, we enjoy staying updated with the latest technology. New and improved models of smartphones, laptops and tablets are introduced regularly, which helps us to stay better connected with friends, family and the world. Although the frequent repurchasing and upgrading of devices can be environmentally problematic, you can dispose of your electronics in a way that is friendly to the planet! Did you know that many of these devices contain semi-precious metals? For example, 1 tonne of recycled smartphones can render the same weight in ore as would be extracted from a traditional mine. When you recycle these electronics they can save a lot of energy. In fact, 1 tonne of recycled laptops conserves the amount of energy necessary to power 710 homes in Ontario for a year.
How do you effectively recycle your old smartphones and electronics? Luckily, 96.7% of GTA residents live within 10 km of an electronics collection depot, which makes recycling easy! Simply locate an OES-approved collection site or event and drop off your items to be recycled free of charge. Since its establishment in 2009, the Recycle My Electronics program has diverted approximately 75 million devices from being disposed of in landfills. Join in the movement to create a greener tomorrow!
Find a collection depot nearest you here: http://www.recyclemyelectronics.ca/on/
2. Participate in Community Environment Days
The City of Toronto facilitates Community Environment Days in its annual program held from April to September in each of Toronto’s 44 wards. These events are designed to encourage residents to reuse and recycle. The program collects items for reuse or recycling in addition to accepting electronics and household hazardous waste for disposal.
Some of the items accepted include:
– Household items like dishes, linens, clothing, books, sporting goods and ornaments
– Used VCRs, cellphones, computers and electronic devices
– Art and stationary supplies
– Hazardous wastes including paint, motor oil, leftover cleaning supplies, gasoline, batteries, pesticides and mercury thermometers
– Medical equipment in working condition, example: hearing aids, vision aids, walking aids
By participating in Community Environment Days, you can help Toronto eliminate waste from landfills. For a complete list of the event dates and what you can bring, visit toronto.ca/environment_days or call 311.
3. Celebrate Earth Day at Toronto’s Annual Spring Cleanup: Clean Toronto Together
Saturday April 22 is Earth Day! Join your community and help clean the city through corporate and residential clean ups. On Friday April 21st at 2 PM, Live Green Toronto will be coordinating a corporate 20-minute spring cleanup event called Clean Toronto Together. Round up your coworkers and help rid the city of garbage and litter. The city of Toronto will be supporting efforts by providing garbage and recycling bags. This year’s goal is to reach 200 000 participants in the city of Toronto, so let’s help #CleanTorontoTogether!
Learn more about Earth Day cleanup events here: http://bit.ly/QCcmhC
4. Support Nature Conservation
Nature and biodiversity are two elements that define Canada’s beauty. Nature Conservancy Canada (NCC) works with individuals, communities, conservation partners, land owners, corporations and various levels of government across Canada to implement programs that best protect Canada’s wildlife. An impressive 2.8 million acres of land are protected by NCC from coast to coast, and the organization constantly fine-tunes its conservation process through on-the-ground work. NCC is able to effectively conserve Canada’s wildlife and ecosystems by addressing changing threats and challenges to Canada’s biodiversity.
You can help support Nature Conservancy Canada! Join in the movement to protect Canada’s beautiful natural spaces by donating to NCC or opting to work as a conservation volunteer. More information about how you can get involved can be found here: http://www.natureconservancy.ca/en/
What initiatives do you take to help reduce the pollution and damage to Canada’s environment? Let us know in the comments below!