Archive for the ‘Water’ Category

Vendor Profile – Eat Industries Inc.

As many of you know, Green Venture’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Eat IndustriesUpRoot Hamilton is rapidly approaching – this Saturday Oct 3rd at EcoHouse. UpRoot Hamilton is a platform to showcase local food and drink in a beautiful heritage setting while celebrating 20 years of community outreach, education and making the Hamilton region a more environmentally-friendly place to work, live and play.

When Fundraising and Events Coordinator Ashley Keenan came across Eat Industries Inc at the 2015 Hamilton Beer Festival she knew that they had to be a part of this vision. Earlier this year business partners Brandon Jackson and Matt Pigeon moved away freatind2om the Toronto food scene to start a business here in Hamilton based on local, fresh, seasonal and handcrafted items. “I love the Hamilton area” says co-owner Brandon Jackson, “The community here is embracing new things and really care about local start-ups.” Aside from their farm-to-table approach to business, Brandon also keeps ‘green’ at home with his family by biking and harvesting meals from his garden.

Eat Industries showcases local foods, butcher their own meat and take care to make all their items themselves or alternatively use products from other fresh and sustainable Hamilton establishments. It is truly amazing to see a vendor starting a food establishment, and hopefully soon to be a food chain, which is customer driven and environmentally responsible; showing us that ‘fast food’ doesn’t have to be cheap or sacrifice flavour.

Eat Industries Inc is currently operating ‘popuproot-up style’ in multiple locations around the city as well as having a perman
ent location in the Hamilton Farmer’s Market. Be sure to try their tasty creations at UpRoot Hamilton this Saturday! Get your tickets here.

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Veevers Park – Clean and Green

Written by: Ashley Keenan

On June 20th Green Venture set out to Veevers Park with a mission of Veevers Park Clean Up 1‘planting and beautification’. Several times a year, with the help of staff and volunteers, we head to our adopted park to do some tidying. These projects can include litter collection, planting, weeding, graffiti removal, painting, and anything else that the area might need. We adopted Veevers Park in 2013 to connect and contribute to the local area and community surrounding our office, Ecohouse.

Our clean-up this past weekend was very productive! We gathered 4 large yard waste bins full of weeds; mostly notably was the thistle growth around the play area. There was a large patch of these prickly little weeds right on the children’s playground restricting where they could run and play. Volunteers and staff put on their extra thick gloves and made the area safe and spacious to play in again for little ones.

Thank You!

A big thank you goes out to all the patrons of Veevers Park! We collected half a bag of trash from the entire park. Keeping our parks clean and enjoyable is a community effort and it is obvious that you all are doing your part to do so! Keep up the great work.Veevers Park Clean Up 2

During our time cleaning and planting on Saturday many families came by to utilize the park but one woman and her two small children get our special thanks. They left the park, seemingly just done playing for the morning, but came back shortly after with donuts for our team. It was such a kind and appreciated gesture that gave us the extra energy we needed to get the job done.

Last, but certainly not least, we want to thank the volunteers who came out. You worked very hard on a hot, sunny, Saturday morning with cheerful smiles and tons of energy! We could not have done it without you!

Adopt-a-Park Program

The adopt-a-park program is run through the City of Hamilton to bring communitiesVeevers Park Clean Up 3 together through parks – “Great parks make great neighbourhoods!” A group signs on for a 3 year timeframe and organizes park enhancements as well as clean-ups. To learn more about this program and how you can make a difference in your area check out this link.

Leave us a comment on your favourite park to visit in Hamilton or how Green Venture can continue to improve Veevers Park in future clean-ups!

Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

Written by: Jessie Golem

This week, we updated the green roof demo at EcoHouse with some Sedums! A green roof or living roof is a roof of a

Sedums

Sedums

building that is partially or completely covered with vegetation and a growing medium, planted over a waterproofing membrane. Green roofs are a beautiful and cost-efficient way to conserve energy, manage storm water, and insulate a building.

Sedums are a shallow-rooted ground cover plant. They have thick leaves that retain a lot of water, making it drought resistant, and they require at least eight hours of sunlight per day, which makes it a perfect plant to install on a green roof.

The benefits of green roofs have been undisputed for several decades. Here

EcoHouse Green Roof

EcoHouse Green Roof

are just some of the benefits they can bring to our cities:

Green roofs are environmentally friendly

Green roofs create oxygen and combat pollutants. Filling a city with green roofs would go a long way to combating the pollution caused by cities, as well as beautify the space. In fact, some large corporations, including Rolls-Royce, and Nintendo of America, have over 75,000 square feet of Sedums covering their rooftops! It’s a great way to use a space that was otherwise not being used, in a way that helps the environment.

Green roofs conserve energy

One of the biggest benefits to having a green roof is that they help to regulate temperatures within a building. They are well insulated, which helps to keep buildings warm in the winter, and also absorb heat and cool down buildings naturally in the summer. In the long run it is a low cost way to reduce energy consumption and save money on your utility

bills.

Green roofs are excellent at managing storm water

A Sedum roof will absorb a lot of water in a rainfall, and in doing so, will significantly reduce the surface run off of a rainfall. Green roofs also naturally filter the water which will improve the water quality, to the point where the run-off rainwater could be used for other purposes (i.e. a flushing toilet)

The list of benefits to having a green roof is a lengthy one. We hope the next time you visit EcoHouse, you will take some time to check out our green roof demo, and dream of the ways green roofs beautify cities, save energy, and help the environment.

Green Wall Tokyo

Green Wall Tokyo

Putting our Waste to Work

Written by: Peter Harris

The 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. A familiar phrase and usually exhibited by any environmentally friendly program or event. We often talk about recycling more and consuming less, but today we wanted to focus on reusing.

In Hamilton, the City operates drop off centres where you can donate furniture, appliances, and bulk items like toys. There are three locations in Hamilton where you can drop off stuff to be reused.

  • 37 Kilbride Road (Mountain) + (Store)
  • 460 Kenora Avenue (East Hamilton)
  • 27 Olympic Drive (Dundas)

The location at 37 Kilbride Road even has a store where you can purchase re-usable items.

Reusing just makes sense! We have already made the product, we might as well reuse it. Disposable products have become attractive because they are convenient and we usually don’t directly pay to throw away our waste. The cost of disposal isn’t included in the ticket price and paid through our taxes so it often isn’t factored into the purchase leaving us with tons of disposable items filling our landfills.

Reusing can also come in many forms, you may be reusing and not even know it! Like using a refillable water bottle, instead of a disposable plastic water bottle. Our using reusable coffee cups, tupperware instead of plastic bags and reusable grocery or tote bags. You’re increasing the lifetime of the product and reducing the need for another!

Within Hamilton, there are lots of companies centred on reusing like Habitat for Humanity’s restore. The Restore takes donations in home renovation materials, such as doors, toilets, lights, and furniture and sell them at significantly lower prices than you would pay for a brand new version.

One company you may not know about in Hamilton which is centered on reusing is REfficient. REfficient is a leader in asset recovery and reverse logistics for the reuse and resale in telecommunications and cable. What does that mean?

REfficient helps telecommunications companies buy or sell inventory or equipment. Large companies may be looking to manage their extensive networks and small companies may be looking to expand. REfficient helps these companies connect and solve these problems. Not only that but as a customer of REfficient you can also request statistics on waste diversion rates and the carbon footprint of your transaction. This means that companies that want to become environmental friendly can instantly know their impact and use that information to make better decisions.

Whether you’re an individual bagging your groceries with reusable bags or a large organization looking for a new printer, the bottom line is reusing is an economic venture. There are plenty of things and ways to reuse in Hamilton, why not give it a try?!

We Love our Laneways!

After a great weekend cleaning up Hamilton’s alleyways with the Beautiful Alleys Clean Up Project, we were feeling a bit inspired to brighten your day!

Alleyways are a defining feature of older urban neighbourhoods. Such extensive networks of passageways and open spaces offer easy access to homes and businesses with minimal car interference. Rather than developing alleys for the benefit of the community, they have become forgotten, underused and abused public spaces.

Does Your Alleyway Need a Makeover? Do you have an alleyway in your neighbourhood that could use a little help? 

Meet the GALA Alleyway Project

map of alleyways in GALA neighbourhood

Beautifying community spaces by adding green space and removing unnecessary asphalt and concrete not only renews the space, but has been proven to improve our community’s water quality, build neighbourhoods, increase bicycle and pedestrian connections and increase natural habitats for birds and butterflies. Through our GALA Alleyway Project, Green Venture is working to transform these spaces to include native species gardens, solar lighting, local art, natural playgrounds and games, and so much more.

We want to hear from you! Do you know problem areas and heavily travelled alleyways that could benefit from a little beautification? Let us know here by filling out our short survey. Contact deirdre.connell@greenventure.ca for more info.

Listen here to our recent interview on CFMU 93.3 about the project

Need some inspiration? Here are some Laneways we Love! 

image

Montreal’s Ruelle Vertes/Green Alleys

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San Francisco’s Living Alley Project

Elfreth’s Alley in Philadelphia

Graffiti Alley

Toronto’s Graffiti Alley, aka Rush Lane

Detroit Green Alleys

Five Points Alley, Cincinnati

Climate Change Action of the Month: Depave Paradise

On September 27th and October 4th, St. Margaret Mary Catholic Elementary School and Green Venture, a local not-for-profit, teamed up to host Hamilton’s second and largest Depave Paradise.

On September 27th, a crew of over 30 staff, students, parents, volunteers and members of the community removed over 1400 square feet of asphalt from the schoolyard to increase the school’s green, play space.On October 4th, over 50 volunteers came back to fill the space with a native species rain garden.

This was Green Venture’s biggest Depave Paradise project after Depaving St. Augustine Catholic Elementary School in 2012 and it will add to the over 10,000 square feet depaved across Canada through the Depave Paradise program. To learn more, please visit www.depaveparadise.ca/.

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For pictures from the Depave Day on September 27th, click here. For pictures from the Planting Day on October 4th, click here.
Removing asphalt and concrete renews and beautifies community spaces. Demonstration projects like St. Margaret Mary help to build sense of community and motivate participants to consider other depaving projects. Beyond the community building, the benefits of depaving are numerous. They include:
  • Increasing green, community space by adding in a natural playgrounds, community vegetable gardens, trees, rain gardens, or other permeable surfaces
  • Decreasing the heat island effect to help cool things down
  • Decreasing the runoff of stormwater to lower its impacts on our sewers and help improve our community’s water quality

We would like to give CN EcoConnexions: From the Ground Up and Shell Fuelling Change a huge thank you for their generous support of this project.

Climate Change Action of the Month: The Green Cottage

Start Climate Change awareness at the home! That is what the Green Cottage in Hamilton has done, this house has many ecofriendly features, which helps eliminate its lasting effects on the climate. The house, located in the north end of Hamilton by the harbour, was originally built in 1885 with many similar houses surrounding it, but since then it has had some major renovations, and although the house does not look much different than the ones surrounding it the Green Cottage is unlike any home in Hamilton.

The Green Cottage

The Green Cottage

Starting on the outside the house is trimmed with salvaged wood, reclaimed wood helps eliminate the process of manufacturing and saves a few trees from being cut down in the process. The house is also insulated on the outside, this is called Exsulation, which provides more thermal heating for the house, eliminating most of the use of furnaces. The roof is also adorned with many solar panels and solar water heaters. Up to 30% of new greenhouse gases around the globe are contributed by non-renewable energy, and using solar energy as an alternative helps to decrease that number and the impacts of climate change.

On the inside the house is NOT equipped with a clothing dryer, air conditioner, stove, refrigerator or microwave! With the house lacking these amenities they are not sucking out energy for appliances that are not essential for everyday needs. The Green Cottage has significantly reduced its energy use, and has set a very high standard for energy conservation.

The house is also surround by a vigorous and beautiful garden. The garden creates green space in a mostly asphalt ridden area, and the plants not only look great but they are absorbing carbon dioxide and eliminating that from out atmosphere. The Green Cottage has gone above and beyond to eliminate their negative effects on climate change and the environment in general. This house is not only proof that you can take an old home and make environmental improvements, but it also demonstrates the many changes you can make a home level.

Written by: Brittney Massey

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