You’re the Solution to Less Pollution

August 27th BBQ and Paint by Numbers Event

A great way to revive community spirit! On August 27th, Brampton Environmental Alliance (BEA) set up a ‘Paint by Numbers’ station for the community of Knightsbridge to paint anti-litter art on waste bins.

Saptha (left) and Sima Naseem (right) are ready to facilitate the ‘Paint by Numbers’ activity at BEA’s station

The BEA event was part of a ‘Back 2 School BBQ’ event organised by Families of Virtue in support of the community. There was plenty of food and vendor displays along with games and activities for children and families. It was lively and fun!

The BEA also held its in-person public/member meeting as part of the day’s activities. Thanks to BEA members, P.A.L. (People Against Littering), Sierra Club, and Human Impact Environment whose volunteers helped out at the event! 

Sierra Club’s Rosemary Keenan sets up waste sorting game.

The ‘Paint by Numbers’ activity is a component of the anti-litter waste education campaign “You’re the Solution to Less Pollution. (See blog post by David Laing on August 10th). Saptha, the BEA student intern and project coordinator, used this event to engage the community and communicate about litter and its effects on the environment. 

Children painting the “Clean water starts with you” waste bin at the event.

A shout out to the staff of the City of Brampton’s Operation Centre. They supported us by providing a shelter space to use while completing the waste bins and transporting the bins to the sites.

A. Barrel located at Knightsbridge
B. Barrel located in Eastbourne Park

Saptha created the initial designs of the anti-litter art for five waste bins. Sima Naseem, a local public artist, helped refine those concepts. Saptha and Sima collaborated to paint the anti-litter art and messages onto the waste bins. 

On the event day, community members participated in painting 3 silhouette waste bins. The other two waste bins were ready to go on-site. 

C. & D. These barrels are headed for Earnscliffe Park

The next part of the project is to collect and analyze the data for the final report. Quantitative and qualitative data will be collected using a combination of surveys and, social media feedback. Observations and data will be collected throughout September.

Saptha wants to understand the public perceptions of all five of the newly painted waste bins after they’ve been in their new locations for a while. She hopes to see positive changes around the areas with the painted cans. Her hypothesis is that, as community members engage with keeping parks clean, it will create a sense of stewardship for those parks meaning reduced litter and an increased level of caring for the environment. 

Positive data may inform whether or not anti-litter public art on waste bins can become a future element in the structure of public spaces to help people engage with their community.

E. Another barrel headed for Eastbourne Park

The Toronto Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) will include a survey as part of the Sustainable Neighbourhood Action Project (SNAP) newsletter to be distributed to the Bramalea community. The survey will capture peoples’ perceptions about disposing litter in these waste bins and its significance in saving the environment.

A sample question in the survey will ask if the amount of litter in the waste bin reflects the presence/absence of littering in the general area of the park. For instance, is there less litter in the area and more litter in the painted waste bins? Staff from the City of Brampton’s Operation Centre have also been asked to observe changes in littering behaviour when changing the waste bins’ garbage bags.

An Instagram poll has already been conducted from @bramptonea where folks voted for their favourite bin!  If you notice these bins at the parks, take a snapshot, and tag us on Instagram! Let us know what you think. 

Saptha wants to thank the BEA member volunteers as well as public artist Sima Naseem, the City of Brampton Operations Centre staff, and the TRCA SNAP project team for making this project possible! 

Stay tuned for the project outcome blog post October 2022. 

Your the Solution to Less Pollution!

Paint by numbers poster

Join us on Saturday August 27th for a free, fun, social, event to promote waste clean up and reduction. It’s all part of the Families of Virtue “Back 2 School BBQ”! We will be painting City of Brampton garbage cans by the numbers using designs provided by local artists. Our friends from Sierra Club Peel will also be demonstrating what gets recycled and what gets tossed through their waste sorting game.

Where: In the greenspace behind 4 & 10 Knightsbridge Road
When: 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

Feeling helpless about environmental issues such as, noxious weeds, pollution, flooding and climate change? Consider joining the Brampton Environmental Alliance. We welcome both individuals and organizations. Come to our BEA members meeting at the BBQ on the 27th. It will run from 1:00 – 2:00pm. Learn who the BEA is and what we do. Learn about One-Planet Living. Meet our member organizations. Learn what you can do to advocate for the environment in your community. All are welcome. See you there!

YOU’RE THE SOLUTION TO LESS POLLUTION

ANTI-LITTERING WASTE EDUCATION CAMPAIGN organized by the Brampton Environmental Alliance and supported the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority

Excerpt from a paper written by the BEA’s York University Student Intern, Sapthasvanaa Killewalavan, (Saptha).

Through the 2040 Vision process and other outreach activities, Brampton residents indicated they want the city to be a leader in environmental innovation. They want our civic leaders to build a healthy, safe, and sustainable city.

Community resilience is fostered by helping connect people with nearby nature. We
want people to value nature. Humans depend on forests and rivers for their well-being. We
wish to help people understand human impacts on the built environment.

Brampton’s littering problem contributes to environmental impacts that interrupts
economic growth and breaks down the quality of life. As the population grows amongst diverse communities, some people may have a limited understanding of proper waste disposal methods and their effect on the environment. Additionally, the economic sector of the city is vast, but it is not entirely responsible for environmental impacts such as air pollution and the possible loss of ecological habitats.

The BEA and its members including the TRCA, Sierra Club, Human Impact Environment and People Against Littering, have teamed to produce a waste education campaign to reduce waste, soil, and air pollution from littering.

A healthy, accessible, litter-free urban park encourages people to engage and connect with green spaces. This waste education campaign will inspire people to take action and contribute to healthier urban parks. As litter slowly disappears the risk of visiting parks in Brampton reduces. Reducing litter can ensure safe and welcoming urban parks.

A major part of the campaign involves engaging people to paint park waste collection barrels and create public art posters. Public art has the ability to shape urban behavior.

Creativity in waste education campaigns to engage the community along with consistent city enforcement, and provision of proper receptacles, all contribute to a positive paradigm shift to reduce littering behaviour. It is an interactive component in the public realm. Hence, anti-litter public art designs can help people behave and interact with the art.

The goal of this project therefore is to provide accessible information and education to people including those in vulnerable communities. Graphic and public art messages will be circulated in the neighborhood and on social media. This can grab the community’s attention. Using large fonts, slogans and bright images, on posters and public art will include important details about littering.

A sample design of a trash can mural inspires the community to protect the
Mississippi River.
Sample poster designs from Google

The program will culminate with an event on Saturday August 27th, 1:00-5:00pm in the Greenspace behind 4 Knightsbridge Road where the community can help paint City of Brampton waste cans based on an artist’s design. Keep that date open on your calendars and stay tuned for event details.

BEA to Co-host Provincial Election Debate

Ontario 100 debates on the environment

The Brampton Environmental Alliance (BEA) is teaming with Engage Peel, Human Impact Environment and GreePAC to host an all-candidates debate for the upcoming Provincial election in the riding of Brampton North. The debate will take place virtually on May 17th, 6:30-8:00pm.

GreenPAC is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization that runs 100 Debates on the Environment, with the objective to make the environment an issue that no party and no candidate can ignore. GreenPAC works with local groups to co-ordinate and underwrite the costs of hosting an all-candidates debate.

“GreenPAC believes, debates let candidates know that the environment is a top voter priority”, according to GreenPAC Program Coordinator Rizwana Hussain. “They help voters to make the connection between climate change and their other priorities, like health and affordability, and to make an informed choice at the polls.”

The debate will offer local candidates the opportunity to answer questions on the environment and other issues important to voters in the Brampton North riding. Attend the debate by registering through Eventbrite here. If you would like to have your question put to the candidates submit your question here.

Brampton’s Earth Day Celebration – A Warm Reception on a Cold Day

By: Rosemary Keenan, Sierra Club Peel Chapter Chair and David Laing, President, Brampton Environmental Alliance
Earth Day Activities

It was a brisk, enjoyable and energizing day at the first ever Grown Green Awards Celebration held at Norton Place Park this past Saturday April 23rd. Norton Place Park is a hidden gem in the heart of the City with a small lake beautifully surrounded by trees and trails. The Earth Day event was about celebrating the Brampton City’s and its residents contributions to a more environmentally friendly world.

Continue reading “Brampton’s Earth Day Celebration – A Warm Reception on a Cold Day”

City Accepting Grow Green Awards Nominations

The City of Brampton has created a new award program to recognize individuals, businesses, organizations and institutions in the city that have demonstrated environmental leadership and have significantly contributed to the “Grow Green” vision of conserving, enhancing, and balancing our natural and built environments to create a healthy, sustainable, and resilient Brampton. Nominations will be accepted until February 28th, 2022 and the awards will be handed out during an Earth Day Environmental Festival to be held at Norton Place Park on Saturday April 23rd.

The Climate Change Award will be given to an individual and a business/organization that has significantly contributed to advancing climate change mitigation, adaptation, awareness/knowledge, and or actions.

The Stewardship Award will be given to an individual and a business/organization that has significantly contributed to the advancement of environmental sustainability iniitiatives related to the conservation and/or stewardship of trees, natural heritage systems, water, and/or the reduction of waste.

The Environmental Youth Award will be given to an individual or youth group that has demonstrated exceptional achievement in the advancement of environmental protection, climate change actions, and/or sustainability.

The Environmental Legacy Award will be given to an individual who has provided outstanding personal service and ongoing contributions to advance the “Grow Green” vision of conserving, enhancing, and balancing our natural and built environments to crate a healthy, resilient and sustainable city.

Peel Region wants your feedback on garbage user fees

Peel Region Waste Bins

Do you regularly use your green bin for compost and kitchen waste? How about garbage vs. recycling. Are you diligent about separating and rinsing out plastic and metal containers before you toss them? Would it change your habits if you had to pay based on the amount of garbage you dispose of?

Currently everyone in Peel Region pays the same regardless of garbage bin size. Sure, if you have more garbage than your bin will hold, you have to buy tags to have additional bags collected. But, if you stay within your bin size, you pay the same as all your neighbours, whether your bin is small, medium or large. That may be about to change.

The folks at the Region of Peel are thinking about changing the rules for garbage collection and they want to hear from you. They are considering charging user fees that vary depending on the bin size you use. One option is to rely solely on a user fee system. Another option is to rely on the tax-base to cover some of the costs of garbage collection while the remainder would be recouped as user fees. Or they could just leave the system as is.

What would your preference be? Here are somethings for you to consider.

Blue-box contamination is a growing problem in Peel Region. Eighty to ninety percent of households do a good job of properly separating garbage from recyclables. But the high contamination rate in the remaining 10-20%, raises Peel’s overall contamination average to 30%. It matters, because contamination of blue box recycling materials costs the Region over $3.6 million in added collection and processing costs each year.1

Another problem is that about half of what Peel residents put out to the street as garbage is actually material that could go into the Blue or Green bins. Fifteen percent of the garbage collected could have been recycled. And over forty percent is actually kitchen scraps or food waste.2 Not only is this expensive for the home owner but it is also bad for the environment.

When food is buried in landfill it rots and produces methane, a greenhouse gas 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. 3 About 6-8% of the world’s human caused greenhouse gases come from food waste.4

Cutting down on waste is a great way to help the environment. Properly separating and sorting waste is another. Being better at both will help the Region save money and reduce what we pay in taxes. Let the folks at Peel Region know what you think about waste collection and user fees by attending an open house or completing the on-line survey.

1 https://pub-peelregion.escribemeetings.com/FileStream.ashx?DocumentId=4482
2 https://peelregion.ca/officialplan/review/pdf/waste-management-discussion-paper.pdf
3 http://www.cec.org/flwy/food-waste-climate-change/#:~:text=When%20food%20ends%20up%20in,more%20potent%20than%20carbon%20dioxide.&text=When%20food%20gets%20wasted%2C%20we,earth%20%E2%80%93%20and%20polluting%20our%20environment.
4 https://www.worldwildlife.org/stories/fight-climate-change-by-preventing-food-waste

BEA Meeting Wednesday December 8, 2021 6:15pm

The next meeting of the Brampton Environmental Alliance will be held virtually on Wednesday December 8th. Informal networking at 6:15pm. The meeting starts at 6:30pm sharp! Click the Register button for your free ticket.

Presentations

Dianne Saxe

Keynote presentation by Dr. Dianne Saxe. Dianne Saxe is one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers and was the independent Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, until the Conservative Government rolled that position under the Office of the Auditor General in 2019. Dianne is running as a member of Provincial Parliament candidate for the Green Party of Ontario (University Rosedale riding) in next year’s Provincial election. Dianne is an articulate defender of the environment and a champion of the new green economy. The BEA is thrilled Dianne has agreed to share her passion and environmental knowledge with BEA meeting participants.

Tooba Shakeel – LEAF newsletter

Spotlight presentation by Tooba Shakeel. Tooba is a Senior Coordinator of Sustainable Neighbourhoods Program (SNAP) at Credit Valley Conservation (CVC). She is an ISA Certified Arborist, an EcoDistrict Accredited Professional and a Board member of LEAF (Local Enhancement & Appreciation of Forests) a Toronto-based not-for-profit group dedicated to urban forest protection. Thanks to Tooba for agreeing to share information about CVC programs in Brampton including the Fletcher’s Creek SNAP!

After the main meeting, those who wish to become more involved in the BEA can join one of the three working groups described below. Sign up to join one of the three working groups here.

Working Groups

  • Events
    This group coordinates events for members and assists with events for residents – BEA Collaboration event, Brampton Earth Day event
  • Education and Resources
    This group arranges talks on environmental topics, using the One Planet principles of focus: Land and Nature, Culture and Community, Travel and Transport as they relate to Brampton. The group also helps connect members to needed resources and expertise on financing and various environmental topics
  • Advocacy
    This group helps coordinate and amplify community advocacy campaigns and environmental initiatives under the three One Planet principles above.