Making choices to keep the Earth clean doesn't have to be massive changes, it can be as simple as switching to silicone bags for the kids' sandwiches for lunch.
Green Action Centre works in the areas of green commuting, composting and waste reduction, sustainable living and resource conservation, and the Compost Program Coordinator, Kristen Malec, has shared some ways that people can make green choices in their day-to-day lives.
Malec starts off by saying the goal is to reduce the amount of garbage communities create because even though our trash gets sent to the landfill, it doesn't have the proper environment for the decomposition process to take place.
"If you have organic materials such as food scraps, meat, items that can decompose and rot, they rot very slowly in our landfills and they actually create a greenhouse gas called methane, which contributes to climate change."
In order for the decomposition to begin, it needs the proper organisms to be present for it to happen and just like most organisms, they need food, air and water to thrive. Malec says that since those requirements are hard to find in a landfill, a bacteria can grow called anaerobic bacteria, and while it eats away at the garbage it creates that greenhouse gas.
Here are three easy tips Malec gives for going green at home:
- Composting. For those who have a yard, they can simply chuck leftover food into a compost bin and for those who don't have much of a yard, vermicomposting might be for you. It's a way to compost within your home with a certain type of worm and put them with your compost in a Rubbermaid container. There's also the option of signing up with Compost Winnipeg, which is an organization that will take compost for people.
- Reuseable Containers. Instead of using single-use plastics such as ziplock bags, people can switch over to silicone reusable bags, carry a water bottle around rather than purchasing a plastic bottle, and swap saran wrap for beeswax wraps.
- Alternative Transportation. Rather than driving to work every day, try riding a bike, walking, or taking the bus. There's an app Manitobans can use called GoManitoba, on it people can find others to carpool to work with, find people to give advice on the fastest bike route to work, or someone to accompany a person who may not have gone on a public transit bus before and help them get comfortable.
"I think every day should be Earth Day. But Earth Day is a great reminder for all of us to stop and think about our impact on the planet and our climate. Small acts, when multiplied by millions, can transform the world. So, we can all adopt small changes into our lives to make a big difference."
Earth Day at the Children's Museum
The Green Action Centre has set up an Earth Day program at the Children's Museum on April 22 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in partnership with Mise En Scene for their debut environmental anthem.
There will be a vermicomposting station throughout the entire duration of the program, stations where guests can experiment with wind turbines and learn about actions they can take at home to conserve energy, a craft station for guests to create an Earth mosaic ornament, and Recycle Everywhere will facilitate Mini Waste Audits.
Mise En Scene will perform from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. and showcase their newly written song called Hey Today. Stefanie Johnson and Jodi Dunlop were inspired by the Green Action Centre and community members and found a common theme in their work: hope and urgency to act. The Green Action Centre staff and members showed so much optimism for a brighter future and that is what brought Johnson and Dunlop to write this song.
"I just encourage everyone to think about our environment and I think that it's ours to take care of and there's so many fun, different things that you can do."
If there are people interested in learning about different ways to reduce their impact on the environment, visit greenactioncentre.ca.