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April 15th to April 20th

Earth Week 2024

What is Earth Day?

Earth Week 2024

Ever wonder how Earth Day began? The first Earth Day was held on April 22, 1970, when San Francisco activist John McConnell and Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson separately asked Americans to join in a grassroots demonstration. Dealing with dangerously serious issues concerning toxic drinking water, air pollution, and the effects of pesticides, an impressive 20 million Americans—10% of the population—ventured outdoors and protested together. 

President Richard Nixon led the nation in creating the Environmental Protection Agency, which followed with successful laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act.

McConnell originally had chosen the spring equinox(March 20, 1970), but Nelson chose April 22, which ended up becoming the official celebration date. (Given that the date of the spring equinox changes over time, it may have made things more complicated to go with the astronomical event rather than just a calendar date.) 

Today, not only is Earth Day meant to increase awareness of environmental problems, but it is also becoming a popular time for many communities to gather to clean up litter, plant trees, or simply reflect on the beauty of nature. Further down the page, we’ve provided a list of activities and projects that you can do to improve your local environment! 

How Can I Participate?

April 15, 2024

Fast fashion has completely revolutionized the apparel industry, but not for the better. Behind every piece of clothing in a store, there is an industry stripping the Earth of its limited resources and exploiting the labor force that works in its garment factories. Tremendous waste characterizes this industry as it depletes healthy soil, contaminates fresh water sources, pollutes the air we breathe, defiles our oceans, destroys forests and damages eco-systems and the health of their biodiversity. 

What is sustainable fashion?

Sustainable fashion refers to a clothing supply chain that is ecologically and socially responsible. It aims to reorient the industry and consumers away from the fast fashion model and toward sustainable practices in sourcing, production, distribution, marketing, and consumption.

What can you do?

You have the power to change the trajectory of fast fashion! Here are some things you can do:

  • Educate yourself about sustainable clothing.
  • Buy less and shop for quality over quantity.
  • Choose natural materials – organic cotton, linen, or hemp.
  • Buy 100% recycled fabrics – 100% recycled polyester, viscose (rayon), etc.
  • Research brands to identify those that are ethical and practice transparency and sustainability.
  • Post a picture of yourself wearing a sustainable garment, explaining its attributes and why you like it. Tag the @earthdaynetwork on social media or visit earthday.org for more information!
  • Choose brands that are manufactured in their own community and connected to the place, people behind them, local economy, and environment.
  • Buy secondhand clothing!
  • Swap clothes with a clothes swap group or start a swap yourself.
  • Learn how to repair your clothes yourself. The longer clothing is kept, the lower their emissions footprint!

Watch this informative video on "Fast Fashion" and its greater impact and what you can do!

April 16, 2024

Plastic is a versatile and cheap material, but it also creates a huge problem for the environment. What are the main causes of plastic pollution?

  1. One cause is the overuse and improper disposal of single-use plastic items, such as bags, bottles, and packaging. These often end up as litter or in landfills, where they can be carried by wind or water to the sea.
  2. Another cause is the low rate of recycling and the lack of regulations and strategies to make producers and companies responsible for the damage plastic causes. This means that more plastic is produced and discarded than reused or recovered.
  3. A third cause is the shipping and fishing industries, which accidentally or carelessly discard plastic trash into the oceans. This includes nets, ropes, buoys, and containers that can harm or entangle marine animals.
  4. A fourth cause is the hidden plastic that we release into the environment without knowing it. This includes microplastics from car tires, synthetic clothes, personal care products, and paint, as well as plastic in cigarette filters and chewing gums.

Plastic pollution can alter habitats and natural processes, reducing ecosystems' ability to adapt to climate change and affecting millions of people's livelihoods, food production, and well-being.

Plastic pollution is a serious and complex issue that requires urgent action from all of us. We can reduce our plastic consumption, support recycling and recovery initiatives, and demand more accountability and responsibility from the plastic industry.

Try this fun Earth Week Scavenger Hunt with your family! While you are completing the Scavenger Hunt, be sure to identify items that are plastic. A bonus, ask the participants how plastic might impact some of the animals found.

April 17, 2024

Time: 6:00pm – 7:00pm (30-45-minute talk – 15 minutes Q&A)

Fee: FREE

Ages: All Ages

Join Assistant Park Superintendent Andrea Maranduik for a talk about the incredible Species at Risk found in the Oro-Medonte area and maybe even in your own neighbourhood!

Andrea is one of the managers of the Bass Lake Cluster of Provincial Parks (Bass Lake, Mara, McRae Point, Carden Alvar, and Springwater) and has worked for Ontario Parks for 20+ years. She would love to teach you and your kiddos about the amazing and sometimes very rare species found in this area, and what you can do to help support these incredible plants and animal species.

Topics for this webinar include:

  • What is a species at risk what’s difference between extinct, extirpated, endangered, threatened, or ‘of concern’.
  • Citizen Science: learn about fun and easy-to-use apps that help track vulnerable species while you and your kids learn about the species and their habitat.
  • What are you most likely to see in this area/your own neighbourhoods.
  • Why green spaces like parks are important for all species.
  • What you could do in everyday life to keep biodiversity thriving in your area.

To register for the Invasive Species Webinar, please visit PerfectMind.

April 18, 2024

Carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases produced by human activities. These activities include transportation, energy usage, and food consumption. The amount of greenhouse gases we emit into the atmosphere contributes to climate change. Reducing your carbon footprint is crucial to protect the environment and limit the impacts of climate change. Below is 10 easy steps to get started.

  1. Use energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances:

Using energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. These types of products use less energy and emit fewer greenhouse gases. When choosing light bulbs, opt for LED bulbs instead of incandescent ones. They use 75% less energy and last up to 25 times longer. When choosing appliances, look for products with the ENERGY STAR label. They meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

  1. Reduce water usage:

Reducing water usage not only conserves water but also reduces energy usage. Most of the energy used in our homes is used to heat water. Here are some tips for reducing water usage:

  • Install low-flow showerheads and faucets.
  • Take shorter showers.
  • Use a dishwasher instead of handwashing dishes.
  • Only run full loads of laundry.
  • Water your lawn and garden early in the morning or late in the evening to reduce evaporation.
  • Fix leaks promptly.
  1. Switch to green transportation options:

Transportation is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. By switching to green transportation options, you can significantly reduce your carbon footprint. Here are some tips for using green transportation:

  • Use public transportation, such as buses and trains
  • Carpool with coworkers or friends
  • Bike or walk to your destination
  • If you need to drive, consider an electric or hybrid vehicle
  1. Buy locally sourced food:

The distance that food travels from the farm to your plate is known as food miles. Buying locally sourced food reduces the distance that food travels and, in turn, reduces carbon emissions. Here are some tips for buying locally sourced food:

  • Shop at local farmers' markets
  • Join a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program.
  • Buy from local farms that sell their products directly to consumers.
  • Look for the "locally grown" label at your grocery store.
  1. Eat more plants in your diet:

Meat production is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. Eating more plants reduces the demand for meat and, in turn, reduces carbon emissions. Here are some tips for transitioning to a plant-based diet:

  • Start small by adding some plant-based protein alternatives for one meal a day
  • Experiment with new plant-based recipes.
  • Gradually increase the amount of plant-based meals in your diet.
  1. Reduce waste:

Landfills are a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions. By reducing waste, you can significantly reduce your carbon footprint. Here are some tips for reducing waste:

  • Recycle as much as possible.
  • Gradually increase the amount of plant-based meals in your diet.
  • Compost food waste and yard waste.
  • Avoid single-use products, such as plastic bags and water bottles.
  • Choose products with minimal packaging.
  1. Use renewable energy sources:

Renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, emit fewer greenhouse gases than fossil fuels. Here are some tips for using renewable energy sources:

  • Install solar panels on your roof
  • Invest in a wind turbine
  • Choose a utility company that uses renewable energy sources
  1. Choose environmentally friendly products:

Choosing environmentally friendly products reduces the amount of waste produced and the amount of energy used to produce them. Here are some tips for choosing environmentally friendly products:

  • Look for products made from sustainable materials, such as bamboo and recycled materials
  • Avoid products containing harmful chemicals, such as pesticides and phthalates.
  • Choose products with minimal packaging.
  1. Use reusable items:

Single-use products, such as plastic bags and water bottles, contribute to waste and greenhouse gas emissions. Here are some tips for using reusable items:

  • Use a reusable water bottle instead of buying single-use plastic water bottles.
  • Bring your own reusable shopping bags to the grocery store.
  • Use a reusable coffee cup instead of a disposable one.
  • Use reusable containers for food storage.
  1. Plant trees:

Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and produce oxygen. Planting trees is a great way to offset your carbon footprint. Here are some tips for planting trees:

  • Plant trees in your yard.
  • Support reforestation efforts by donating to organizations that plant trees.
  • Participate in community tree planting events.

Reducing your carbon footprint is crucial to protect the environment and limit the impacts of climate change. By following these 10 easy steps, you can significantly reduce your carbon footprint and make a positive impact on the environment. Remember, small changes can make a big difference. Take action and make a difference today.

April 19, 2024

4 Simple ways you can support our pollinators!

  1. Planting bee-friendly flowers and plants!

This is one of the most direct ways to positively impact the pollinators in your area and support their habitat. You can grow bee-friendly flowers anywhere that could use a little brightening up, including:

  • Balconies
  • Rooftops
  • Backyards
  • Lawns
  • Community gardens
  • Alleyways
  • Vacant lots

Pro Tip: When choosing your flowers, it’s best to pick blooms native to your area. Not only are these favored by native wild bees – they also require less maintenance since they naturally thrive in your climate.

For more information on our Pollinators and what plans, flowers and environments help them to thrive review  The Guide for Gardeners, Farmers and Land Managers in Manitoulin Lake Simcoe!

  1. Become a lazy gardener!

When it comes to cleaning your garden or yard in the fall, bees will thank you for taking the “lazy” approach. Leaving some twigs on the ground and not raking up all the leaves provides a nesting area for solitary bees during the winter.

  1. Go pesticide FREE!

Pesticides have done massive damage to bee populations. With a few modifications to your landscaping practices, you can do away with harmful pesticides and keep your property looking beautiful using safe and natural techniques.

  1. Buy from local organic farms!

Small, local, organic farms that grow a diverse selection of fruits and veggies are a pollinator’s paradise. Be sure to support your local farmers by stocking up on fresh produce at the market or subscribing to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) vegetable basket. The farmers, the bees, and your taste buds will all thank you!

April 20, 2024

 

Help clean up your community, one front yard at a time! Pick up at least one bag of litter and show your community love with your support. Be sure to use gloves or tongs when cleaning up litter to ensure you protect yourself.

Picking up litter may seem like a very small impact but if we all worked together, we could change the world. For reference, if every person picked up just one piece of litter today, there would be over 300 million fewer pieces of litter. If every person picked up 10 pieces of litter, there would be 3 billion fewer pieces damaging our environment.

Please do your part in keeping Oro-Medonte clean!

Contact Us

Township of Oro-Medonte Administration Centre
148 Line 7 South
Oro-Medonte, ON L0L 2E0

Phone: (705) 487-2171
Fax: (705) 487-0133

Happy Earth Day

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