The City of Markham partnered with Remington Group to present Earth Day, an event for locals to learn about sustainability and reducing our carbon/ecological footprint. The event included live animal presentations, free rides on the recycled Pride of Canada Carousel, test drives of EV’s and many information booths.
Photo: Speaking of Wildlife duo educate young attendees about snapping turtles.
Andrew Yang and Luana Stroyven, youth volunteers with the city, were weaving milk bags into mattresses that are sent to homeless shelters in Toronto and abroad. The bags come from local community centres, recycling centres, and elementary schools who run donation drives with their students.
Jesse Kang of the ‘Don’t Flush this Stuff’ program, says the only things that should go into the toilet are poo, pee and toilet paper. Some companies claim baby wipes are flush-able but they do not break down; the table display showed that after being immersed in a jar of water for two years, the wipes did not break down at all.
The program also stressed taking old medication back to the pharmacy, as it kills micro-organisms used at the treatment plant when flushed down the toilet. This deters the cleaning process, as do q-tips, dental floss and most things people try to flush.
Worn, torn, stained or brand new clothing, running shoes, socks, undergarments, bedding and pillows are accepted in the City’s Textile Recycling program. They are then sold into the community or recycled as carpet padding, insulation or car stuffing, explained Alanna Mackenzie of the City’s waste management department.
The original three ‘r’s have been updated from reduce, reuse, recycle to re-wear, reuse, recycle for their specific purpose. Even dirty gloves, bras, old belts and holey socks can be donated and will be recycled into the program.
Jessica Yau of the sustainability and asset management department at the city explained that the entire day was about efforts to make it more sustainable and how residents can get involved.
Our municipality was first to be declared monarch friendly in 2016 and in partnership with the David Suzuki Foundation who assigned a task list, a few of which have already been checked off. The plan is for the program to develop into a pollinator conservation initiative that encompasses bees, birds and other beneficial insects.
Matt Ribble, City Arborist, Mayor Frank Scarpitti and Councillor Don Hamilton all took turns addressing the crowd from the podium (pictured).
Also in attendance were Deputy Mayor Jack Heath, Regional Councillors Nirmala Armstrong and Joe Li, Councillors Alan Ho, Karen Rhea, Valerie Burke, Logan Kanapathi, Amanda Collucci, and Alex Chiu.
CAO Andy Taylor and Director, Sustainability & Asset Management at City of Markham, Graham Seaman were also present as were community partners:
- Forestry Services
- Water and Waste Water
- Alectra Utilities
- Parks Canada
- York Region
- Municipal Environmental Advisory Committee
Visit www.markham.ca for updates and information on these programs how to get involved.