Put your environmental footprint on a diet

The average Canadian generates 2.2 kilograms of waste per day. So this summer, why not challenge yourself and your family to see if you can reduce the size of your environmental footprint?

Incorporating environmentally-friendly habits into our day-to-day life might be easier than you think. First, learn the size of your footprint. This can be done by using an online, one-minute carbon calculator posted by TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF) at www.tdfef.com.

“Companies are implementing a zero-waste policy, so why not the average citizen?” says Mary Desjardins, the executive director of TD FEF. “Practicing these tips will significantly lower your environmental footprint and help protect our planet, making your footprint the envy of others.”

TD FEF, known as one of Canada’s longest serving environmental charities, gives us five ways to shrink the ‘waste-line’:

• Minimize the packaging: From bringing reusable bags to grocery stores, to packing your own lunch in a reusable container, to using your own cup for your morning coffee, minimizing the packaging you consume will make a big difference and keep waste out of landfills.

• Think before you throw it out: Consider whether your refuse can be recycled, reused or put it in the organic bin or compost. If there’s alternative to throwing it in the garbage – do it.

• Less liquid please: Canada has an abundance of water, but Canadians are also the biggest water wasters. Lighten your environmental footprint by turning off the tap while brushing your teeth, don’t overwater your lawn and try to take showers instead of baths.

• No more junk mail: Canadians receive an average of 76 kilograms of unsolicited mail per year. Cut out this unhealthy environmental byproduct by unsubscribing to mailing lists and canceling magazine subscriptions you no longer want. Don’t forget to recycle your junk mail.

• Shop and eat local: Visit your local farmers’ market to eat organically locally. Visiting farmers’ markets helps to reduce your footprint and supports the farmers that feed your community.

www.newscanada.com

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