Designers and labels get Fashion Weeks in cities around the world. The entire movie industry gets two weeks in Toronto every September. But they have nothing on the most important five days on my calendar: Waste Reduction Week in Canada.
We can start by thinking about small every day actions. You’ve probably heard this one a million times, and you’ll probably hear it a million more times, as well as right now: by switching from a single-use coffee cup to a reusable cup every day, you make a huge mark by leaving a considerably smaller ecological footprint. Specifically, if you switch from a single-use to a reusable cup, that prevents almost 10 kg of material from being generated annually.
Recycling has come a long way. For example, in Halton you can compost paper coffee cups in your GreenCart, and recycle plastic cups in your Blue Box. However, of the 3Rs, reduce and reuse, trump recycling on days that end with ‘y’.
For those that like to think bigger — why not organize a team of volunteers in the office to lead a bunch of easy and effective initiatives: organize a lunch and learn about lamp recycling to kick-off your Waste Reduction Week activities; or even start an office recycling program.
No matter the size or scale of an initiative, every little bit helps. Sure, it’s a cliché, but if it wasn’t true, then it wouldn’t be a cliché. Reduce your consumption. Be proactive. Demonstrate your commitment to the environment from October 21 to 27 and proclaim it Waste Reduction Week.
About this guest blogger:
Catherine Leighton is the Program Manager for Waste Reduction Week in Canada and Waste-Free Lunch Challenge. She works for Recycling Council of Ontario.