Reaching New Heights With Waste Reduction Week

People in apartments and condos have been taking a lot of heat lately for not working as hard at recycling as those in houses.

But a local townhouse condominium community seems to be making some strides, says the man whose job it is to get rid of everything on collection day.

Sanitation worker Selwyn Murray, says his workplace, the complex at Morningside and Military Trail, has many active recyclers. He says knowing that it is Waste Reduction Week will only help increase residents awareness and encourage them to be an even greener community.

“People around this complex [719 Military Trail] will do more this week. There is a lot of recycling already,” Murray said. “There is less garbage and more recycling and that is great.”

Waste Reduction Week (WRW) takes place from Oct 19 to 25 and urges all individuals to do their part in helping making the environment greener. Ontarians are encouraged to recycle, reduce and reuse whether it be at their homes, school or work.

The reduction week was established in Canada by a union of 13 recycling councils, including the Recycling Council of Ontario, and sister organizations from across Canada. The program focuses on the 3E’s – education, engagement and empowerment.

At the heart of the program is the goal to educate all Ontarians about the environmental consequence in association with waste, while providing them information on how they can reduce waste in their everyday lives.

By distributing “facts and stats” of waste issues, “hands on tools”, and online registration to support participation, organizers hope to encourage this week so people participate all year round.

The Recycling Council of Ontario is a non-profit, membership-based organization involved in issues of waste generation and consumption and reduction.

Lucy Robinson, Executive Assistant & Manager of Member Relations of the RCO, says this year they expect more than 5,500 schools, 200 municipalities and 2,000 businesses to participate in Waste Reduction Week.

“Last year, the program grew 40 per cent nationally and we are expecting a greater response rate this year,” Robinson said.

This year, they have announced Oscar the Grouch as their official spokes puppet, as he is known for loving all garbage. He will be plastered all over public service announcements, posters and public relations campaigns, delivering his message for everyone to recycle, reuse and reduce.

“This year we want to make Waste Reduction Week into a household name,” Robinson said. “Since Oscar the Grouch was announced as the spokes muppet, the recycling council has received millions of media impressions from print and web coverage.”

To register for Waste Reduction Week, go to