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Now that the Holidays are approaching there are many ways to keep your environmental resolutions. Make your holidays more meaningful by following these suggestions:
- Be more creative and make your own Christmas decorations
- Use less wrapping paper or alternatives, such as recycled materials, fabric, ribbon, and reusable bags and boxes
- Give fair-trade gifts and waste-free presents
- Buy local – support local artisans and small businesses or donate to a cause in honour of your loved one
- Pay more attention to the social and environmental quality or your purchases
Remember the true meaning of the Holidays and don’t get gripped in a frenzy of consumption.
As a Conservation Association, Oakvillegreen is always trying to find ways to help “green” our community. We want to give you some easy steps to start taking action towards a more sustainable life.
Winter is here and while we all want to stay warm, we tend to overheat our houses, offices and schools. Our homes are responsible for much of the carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere that are causing climate change. Today you can make a difference by turning down your thermostat by 1C. Just by turning your heating down 1C you can save 300kg of carbon dioxide per year and up to 10% off your bill.
Be sure to use your heat wisely this winter and insulate your home and your body with an extra sweater! It doesn’t need to be ‘National Sweater Day’ to save money and reduce your energy consumption! If you want to go one step further, install a programmable thermostat and save approximately 10% on your heating and cooling costs.
Oakvillegreen Conservation Association encourages you to VOTE in the upcoming municipal election on Monday October 27th, 2014. Information on your Ward and Regional Councilor and Mayoral Candidates can be found here.
Advance polling dates, voting locations and other relevant voter information is available here.
We encourage you to ask your Ward and Regional council and mayoral candidates where they stand on these important environmental issues affecting Oakville’s future.
On incineration and waste diversion:
Modern thermal (incinerator – waste to energy) technologies although purported to be more efficient, continue to generate highly toxic substances such as dioxins and furans. To compound this problem these toxins are known to form nanoparticles that may directly penetrate the lungs. This poses a high risk to human health and the environment. The high cost to run incinerators will be paid for by its residents, and does not act as an incentive to reduce waste.
Halton Region imposed a moratorium on incinerator technologies in June 2007, because of health risks and the high cost involved and instead embarked on an intensified waste diversion program. To date Halton Region’s successful programs have achieved a waste diversion of 65%. This has extended the life of our landfill to 2044, already saved residents close to $1billion and resulted in a reduced carbon footprint on the environment.
Will you support extending the moratorium, and working on improving our waste diversion to as near as attainable a zero waste goal?
On achieving our Urban Forest Strategic Management Plan targets:
Oakville has taken the visionary step of developing an Urban Forest Strategic Management Plan and our Official Plan – Livable Oakville – contains commitments to both maintain the existing urban forest and progressively increase the urban forest to achieve a canopy cover of 40% Town-wide.
Will you support the implementation of our urban forest strategic management plans and targets through enhanced tree protection bylaws, and by improving tree establishment and species diversity and resources for stewardship programs on public and private lands?
On improving watershed health:
In 2013 Conservation Halton’s Watershed Report Card gave parts of Oakville a score of D or F for surface water quality, forest conditions and impervious land cover, reflecting a legacy of negative impacts resulting from poorly planned urban development.
What will you do to reverse these trends and protect our region’s watersheds and water quality?