While the weather might not feel like it, spring is here. As snowbanks disappear, they reveal an untidy reality though—a whole lot of garbage. Never fear though, as every April, London Ontario rolls up its sleeves and works on changing that with the 12 Days of Cleaning and London Clean and Green. This community initiative wraps up with a 20-minute workplace makeover, community cleanups around the city, and Earth Day celebrations. It is a great way to usher in spring and make our community a cleaner and greener place to work and live.

Load of Rubbish loves these celebrations. Not only do people turn their thoughts to the environment and how we can physically make it look better (remove the garbage!), but it makes us think about our own spaces and what we can personally do to keep our world cleaner year round. There is lots we can do to reduce waste in the first place! For those in need of someplace to start, try these 12 tips;

12 Ways to Reduce Waste during London’s Clean & Green

AND Beyond!

  1. Ditch the plastic bags – carry reusable shopping bags with you when you go shopping & say no to plastic
  2. Start a composter – not only does it reduce your household waste, but it leaves you with compost for your garden!
  3. Recycle your electronicsLoad of Rubbish takes your old TVs, computer, phones, stereos, game systems and more and makes sure they are delivered to recyclers where precious metals, glass & plastics are safely extracted
  4. Donate old clothes & small appliances you no longer use – LoR collects these items as well. We drop off collected items at area thrift stores.
  5. Carry and use reusable water bottles and coffee cups – Grab your cup before you leave the house. Many coffee shops offer discounts for customers with their own travel mugs. Several festivals have water stations where you can refill water bottles as well.
  6. Say no to straws – refuse single-use straws and reduce their plastic presence in our landfills and waterways
  7. Use cloth napkins instead of single-use ones – no more wasted resources. Think about paper towels, paper plates, and other single-use items too. If we don’t use them, companies won’t produce them, thereby eliminating their waste.
  8. Take old paints to special waste collection sites – while Load of Rubbish is not licensed to collect hazardous waste, there are several locations in the city where you can safely return your old paint
  9. Safely dispose of pesticides, fertilizers, pool chemicals, and other hazardous waste – find a local London Household Special Waste Depot to safely return them to
  10. Quit smoking – Time to butt out. The world’s biggest littered item is cigarettes. The random act of flicking them away creates a slow to decompose toxic waste that harms wildlife, water and soil. Yuck!
  11. Clean up renovation material – while renovation materials are not collected with regular household waste, Load of Rubbish collects it. We regularly drop off items at Green Valley Recycling where they see new life in a variety of ways.
  12. Reduce food waste – why spend money on food you don’t eat? Do a little meal planning, buy only what you need, use up items in your fridge before they go bad. It will save your pocketbook & our global food waste.

What other ways can you reduce waste for yourself, in your community, and for the world?