This week marks Waste Reduction Week in Canada; a national initiative to get people thinking about the amount of waste they produce every day.
“Waste reduction week is our key environmental opportunity to make sure that the issues of consumption, of resource conservation and of waste prevention are brought to the forefront of the public's mind,” says Jo-Anne St. Godard, Executive Director of the Recycling Council of Ontario.
This year,Waste Reduction Week is kicking off with a reality check for students in Ontario. 50 elementary school kids visited a local waste management facility to showcase just how much garbage Canadians produce.
At the Peel Integrated Waste Management Facility in Brampton, the Waste-Free Lunch Challenge 2011 launched Monday.
“The waste-free lunch challenge is an educational program that is challenging and directed at the students themselves to get them to think about how they actually consume and pack a lunch,” explains St. Godard.
“Students across the province that go from grade K to 8 are challenged to pack a waste-free lunch. They measure the lunch and the waste that comes out of them every day for the next 5 days and we have prizes for schools that are able to produce the least amount of waste.”
St. Godard hopes the challenge will get students and families thinking about their long-term impact on the environment.
“The program is just a constant reminder that we can do better and we have to do better,” she says. “Because the province is only at 30 per cent waste reduction we have a long way to go.”