COLUMN: Summerland celebrates 10 years of Earth Week

The District of Summerland invites the community to the 10th annual Earth Week Celebration being held April 23 to 28.

All activities are completely free and are focused on ways individuals and families can reduce their environmental footprint and contribute to keeping our community beautiful.

Throughout the week there will be a variety of activities, including the popular One-Day Downtown Recycling Depot on Wednesday April 24, where residents can reduce their driving and bring depot-only recycling items such as styrofoam, soft plastics, glass, electronics, and power tools to Municipal Hall, 13211 Henry Ave., between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Keeping these items out of the landfill extends its life and reduces the costs to operate the landfill, as well as reducing the energy and resources needed to produce new products.

READ MORE: COLUMN: Why Earth Week still matters

READ MORE: GUEST COLUMN: Every day should be Earth Day

For the first time, this year’s Earth Week Celebrations will include E-Day, an event focused on electrically-powered tools and transportation options.

Electric vehicles from a variety of local dealers will be on display, as will electric bicycles and an assortment of electric power tools such as chainsaws, trimmers, and lawnmowers.

Summerland’s Parks Department switched much of their equipment to electrically-powered pieces in 2018, reducing the noise and fumes from the equipment as well as the greenhouse gas emissions caused by burning fossil fuels.

This fun event is a great opportunity to check out some of these new travel and tool options for yourself.

E-day happens April 25 from noon to 4 p.m. in Memorial Park at the corner of Kelly Avenue and Wharton Street.

Residents who want to stop receiving their utility bills by mail will have an extra incentive to do so on April 23, as everyone who signs up with staff at Municipal Hall that day will be entered to win great prizes from local businesses.

The postage offset by customers who switch to e-billing is put into a Municipal Tree Fund, which supports planting trees in Summerland – a very important tool in the community’s efforts to reduce climate change and adapt to hotter and drier conditions.

Summerland Secondary School is hosting a series of environmentally-focused films in the Centre Stage Theatre during the daytime of Friday April 26.

Students will introduce the films and a short discussion will follow each one.

Members of the public are invited to attend, and can find a list of the films and showtimes at www.summerland.ca/earthweek.

Throughout the week, True Grain Bakery will be promoting a series of in-store and online educational tidbits covering organics, green packaging, and local agriculture.

They will also be challenging their customers to use their refillable mugs and giving away sample bags of kernels to encourage people to try growing them at home.

As always, Summerland’s Earth Week culminates with an Earth Day tree-planting event, now in its 13th year.

Details on that event and all of the other fun activities happening over the weekend can be found at www.summerland.ca/earthweek.

Summerland hosts events throughout the year focused on environmental stewardship and taking action to address climate change.

Anyone interested in being kept informed directly of these activities or other ways to be involved can email climate.action@summerland.ca and ask to be added to the municipality’s climate action email list.

Tami Rothery is Summerland’s Sustainability/Alternative Energy Coordinator.

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