Sustainable Actions in the House

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by Edmar Luiz Xavier Neto, Keep Shine Office Manager

Keep Shine Building Maintenance has noticed some conduits that can be adapted to the maintenance of the environment in which we live. We are in a historical period, where consumption is part of daily life. Technology advances and consumption increases, in an inexhaustible process of production, consumption and disposal. According to data from the United Nations[1], 2 billion tons of garbage are produced each year. The text marking World Habitat Day, celebrated October 1, 2018, says that to meet the needs of the 7.6 billion people on the planet, it would take 70% of another planet to accommodate all the waste generated.

Some of our teams work in industrial areas that collect and treat this waste and today’s tip is a very important tip for all of us, as it optimizes the waste treatment process by turning it into clean energy back to the community. You, along with Keep Shine Building Maintenance, can make a big difference to the sustainable development of our planet! It is the positive actions that begin in our home that make the difference in the bigger actions promoted by our clients, adding the forces we have achieved a cleaner, healthier and beautiful environment to live in!

In Toronto, each Canadian produce 720 kg of waste a year on average, 7% more than the average production per person in the United States. It is 2.8 tons of garbage produced on average by a family of 4 people in Canada. Toronto’s organic garbage comes at a rate of 10,000 tonnes per week, generating half a million tonnes of organic waste per year in the city[2]. This garbage is collected selectively in Toronto and comes in some interesting places to be processed and transformed into energy. We live in one big place, Toronto is our home and it is our duty to take good care of the city that always welcomes us with open arms!

It is high to talk about sustainable development and to charge governments macro solutions to the problems related to waste production, but will we, citizens, do our part? Do you know how to participate effectively in improving our community? I’m going to explain to you! You should know that the organic residue, or organic waste, is all leftover residue of vegetable or animal origin. Most often, it is made up of vegetable and fruit remains, paper, bones and human waste that quickly disintegrate. Toronto City Hall’s Green Bin program exists to help keep this organic waste out of landfills. The city collects organic garbage in approximately 460,000 residences, besides condominiums and condominiums, schools, public buildings and in 20 parks spread throughout the city. This selective collection takes organic waste to processing industries, where it will be recycled and made into organic compost for city parks and biogas. By 2019, Toronto City Hall has begun transforming this biogas into Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) that can be used to fuel the rubbish collection fleet, heat residences and generate electricity for the city[3]. That is, if you help separate the garbage that is produced in your home you help to improve the city, which makes great difference and serves as an example for the province, which uses the experience to replicate similar processes in the country and improves the quality of life of every community in Canada and the world, as this is the second largest country on Earth.

Circular model showing how waste can ultimately be used to create green energy.

Source: Guy Parsons (Canadian Geographic)

It is very easy to organize your organic garbage for the selective collection, you just need to put your organic garbage inside a bag, tie and deposit it in a Green Bin near you. What can you put in the Green Bin?

  • Fruits and vagetables
  • Meat, poultry, fish products
  • Pasta, bread, cereals, rice
  • Dairy products, eggs and shells
  • Coffee grounds / filters, tea bags
  • Cake, cookies, candy, nuts
  • Diapers, sanitary products
  • Animal waste, bedding, cat litter
  • House plants, including soil
  • Paper – soiled
    • Food packaging, ice cream containers, popcorn, flour and sugar bags
    • Tissues, napkins, paper towels (not soiled with chemicals such as cleaning products)

Green Bin Information

Knowing what you can put for recycling in the Green Bin, you need to pay attention to what you CAN NOT dispose of with organic waste:

  • Packaging
    • Plastic or foil bags / wrap / trays
    • Outer packaging
    • Foam polystyrene meat trays and liners
    • Plastic food containers, glass jars, pop cans
    • Hot drinks cups, lids, sleeves
  • Garbage
    • Chopsticks, popsicle sticks, toothpicks
    • Dryer Sheets, baby wipes, make-up pads, dental floss, cotton tipped swabs
    • Hair, pet fur, feathers, wax, cigarette butts, wine corks, vacuum bags / contents, fireplace and BBQ ashes

Green Bin Information 2

If you want to know more about which products you can dispose of and where you can discard it, just go to the Toronto City Hall website[4] or call 311. They have a list with more than 1500 waste items with indications of how to discard each one. Do your part and help Keep Shine promote clean and healthy environments for our city! This is our tip today!