Posts Tagged ‘Hamilton’

Are Your Light Bulbs A Bright Idea?

Lighting in our homes counts for 1/4 of our energy bills. The type of light bulb we use at home can play a big role in just how much- or how little- we pay each month. So what kind do you use? What kind should you use? And what is the difference between them all?

An incandescent lightbulb.

An incandescent lightbulb.

Incandescent Light Bulbs

Incandescent Light Bulbs are the most inefficient, and as a result, they’re also the ones that will cost you the most. At $0.10 per kilowatt hour, running for 8 hours a day, just one 100-watt incandescent bulb will cost over $22 more than a 25-watt CFL bulb per year. Incandescent bulbs also require more frequent replacing- so you’ll be spending more on light bulbs, too, as the average lifespan of an incandescent bulb is 600-700 hours.

With this information, it’s no surprise that incandescent bulbs are being phased out and quickly becoming a thing of the past!

A Compact Fluorescent Bulb, aka CFL.

A Compact Fluorescent Bulb, aka CFL.

Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs

Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFL) use 25% of the electricity of a comparable incandescent bulb; however, they aren’t as energy efficient as LEDs. Their lifespan also greatly exceeds those of incandescent bulbs; where an incandescent bulb will last 600-700 hours, CFL bulbs will last 7,000-10,000 hours, adding to a household’s savings.

The disadvantage of CFL lights is that they contain mercury inside the bulb, which can cause problems if the bulb breaks. As a result of this mercury, CFL lights are deemed to be Household Hazardous Waste, and need to be disposed of with other HHW products, like oil paint and batteries.

Look familiar? LEDs are gaining in popularity.

Look familiar? LEDs are gaining in popularity.

LED Lights

Light-Emitting Diode Bulbs (LED) last a lot longer than other lightbulbs; their average lifetime is 50,000- 100,000 hours! As a result, even though these are often more expensive at the time of purchase, fewer bulbs are needed over time. Fortunately, as manufacturing technology advances, the prices for these bulbs will likely start to lower.

LEDs use very little energy, and do not contain toxic chemicals, so they are not considered household hazardous waste. One 25W LED costs $30, but will last 15-20 years.

LEDs and CFLs are becoming more and more popular when individuals are looking to change their bulbs. Their impressive lifetime and their reduced environmental effects also play a major role in the switch from incandescents to CFLs and LEDs.

Celebrating 20 Years: A Look Back

Green Venture officially began operating in 1995, making 2015 our 20th anniversary. Although we’ll be marking this special occasion with an amazing event called UpRoot Hamilton (which you can read more about), we’ve also taken the time to think about our past 20 years, and the amazing journey we’ve been on as we try to make Hamilton and area the most environmentally friendly place to live, one day, and one action, at a time.

Here are some of our highlights.

1994- Green Venture is founded as part of a provincial “Green Communities Program” under the direction of the Region of Hamilton-Wentworth.

1995- Jackson square GV office

Green Venture’s Jackson Square Storefront location. Yes, we do still have that neon sign!

1995- A Jackson Square storefront becomes Green Venture’s first office space.

1996- Following the cancellation of the “Green Communities” program, Green Venture becomes an independent not-for-profit organization, hiring Heather Donison as its new Executive Director.

2000- In partnership with the Hamilton Air Quality Improvement Committee, Green Venture launches the Region’s first annual Commuter Challenge.

2003- Green Venture secures the use of the Veevers Estate in Hamilton’s East End and begins renovations to transform the space into an environmental education and demonstration centre.

The first welcome sign to the EcoHouse Community Garden.

The first welcome sign to the EcoHouse Community Garden.

2005- The EcoHouse Community Garden is established as a prototype garden for the region. Its popularity encourages over 70 other community gardens to be created city-wide over the next several years.

2007- After six years as a staff member, Pete Wobschall becomes Green Venture’s Executive Director. During his tenure, he guides the organization through the development of a revised mission, vision and values.

2008- Solar panels and a wind turbine are installed onsite at EcoHouse, allowing visitors to explore the pros and cons of installing alternative energy at their own home.

2009- The Enbridge Home Weatherization Retrofit Program is launched. With a goal of assisting residents in reducing their energy bills while improving the efficiency of their home, it quickly becomes one of Green Venture’s most in-demand programs.

2010- The first Seedy Saturday event is launched. Today, the event, co-hosted by Green Venture and the Hamilton Community Garden Network, attracts hundreds of eager gardeners each winter.

2011- With assistance from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Bay Area Restoration Council and Green Venture create an easy-to-access education centre focusing on Hamilton Harbour Watershed issues.

Kathryn Enders, Green Venture's current Executive Director, with one of our newest displays- an electric CarShare car!

Kathryn Enders, Green Venture’s current Executive Director, with one of our newest displays- a plug-in hybrid CarShare car!

2013- Kathryn Enders is hired as Green Venture’s Executive Director. In the same year, she travels to Mexico on behalf of Green Communities Canada to present at the Commission for Environmental Co-operation about the success of the Depave program.

2014- EcoHouse Educational Tours increase by 19% from the previous year, solidifying Green Venture’s place as the region’s premiere environmental demonstration and education facility.

2015- Green Venture completes their participation in the Good To Great program, leading to a renewed emphasis on revenue diversification, including the launch of special fundraising events and donor campaigns.

My Green Venture Internship: Lessons Learned

Hi! My name’s Areeba and I’ve just completed a seven week placement at Green Venture. I have learned many different things during the past seven weeks through my position as a green gardener where I assist with the maintenance of the many gardens and facilities present on the property.

During the weeks of my placement I can confidently say that I know how to successfully identify many plants and weeds, use various gardening tools (like a lawn mower), and paint skillfully. Sometimes, like many outdoor jobs, the weather turns on us. When I am indoors, I help keep the displays organized and up-to-date, organize materials, and assist with other tasks around the office. I also had the chance to participate in numerous road trips like a visit to a local farm with other staff.

Being a green gardener has provided me with extensive knowledge of environmental issues and initiatives, and the opportunity to take part in the solutions. For example, I helped to build the new green roof at EcoHouse. Green Roofs are a cost-efficient way to save energy, manage storm water, and insulate the building. This was an eye-opening experience that prompted me to think about the other green initiatives in the Hamilton community.

EcoHouse Green Roof

EcoHouse Green Roof

I have gained valuable experience and skills while working at Green Venture. Before working here I had no real understanding of the issues that are present in our city and in the community. By communicating with the talented and educated program staff and coworkers, I gained thorough insight about various environmental topics and going green together!

Written by: Areeba

Are you UpRooted?

Green eggs and ham may not be on the menu, but Hamilton’s first social food market will still be turning green this Fall.

UpRoot Hamilton, a fundraiser celebrating Green Venture’s 20th Anniversary will feature local chefs, local ingredients and the impact that eating local can have on the environment. Attendees to the October 3 event will be able to sample locally sourced and inspired food dishes that come from equally unique vendors, many of whom do not yet have an actual storefront location in the city.

“The reputation of Hamilton’s food scene is really taking off,” said Green Venture’s Executive Director Kathryn Enders. “We’re excited to celebrate rising chefs with this event, as well as showcase just how easy- and delicious- it can be to eat locally and reduce your environmental footprint in the process.”

A side view of Green Venture's historic EcoHouse site.

A side view of Green Venture’s historic EcoHouse site.

The venue for UpRoot Hamilton, Green Venture’s EcoHouse, is just as unique as the food that will be served. An 1850s stone farmhouse, Green Venture has converted the property to be a complete environmental education and demonstration center of sustainable living that attracts over 10,000 individuals each year. As part of UpRoot Hamilton, Green Venture will be opening its gates for attendees to tour the two acre property and farmhouse as they sample the evening’s culinary delights.

Green Venture, Hamilton’s premiere environmental education not-for-profit organization, is dedicated to finding long-lasting, positive and practical ways to make Hamilton and the Golden Horseshoe region the most environmentally-friendly place to be, every single day.

UpRoot Hamilton, the organization’s 20th Anniversary Celebration will be held October 3rd, 2015 from 5-10:30pm at EcoHouse (22 Veevers Drive). For more information, or to purchase tickets, please visit www.greenventure.ca.

Totally Transit – Connecting Older Adults with Public Transit

hsrGreen Venture has been offering bus education programs for several years through the Totally Transit program.  This program introduces people to the HSR, and provides them with the information needed to take the bus.  This is the second year that Green Venture has expanded this program to cater to older adults.

Taking the bus is one of the most convenient and affordable ways to get around our city.  The HSR carries millions of passengers per year and operates comprehensive bus routes throughout Hamilton.  These workshops will discuss HSR bus services and focus on the neighbourhood around the workshop location.

Lets ride the bus oct 24 _121024 vs 007

Through a series of free workshops offered at ten locations across Hamilton, older adults will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to confidently navigate public transit.  Topics such as local bus routes, bus fare and passes, seniors’ discounts, and trip planning will be covered.

After a 45 minute presentation on taking the bus, an optional 15 minute presentation will be offered on how to use Google maps to plan your trip, for those who use the internet.  All workshop participants will have the opportunity to fill out a form requesting bus trip planning to two destinations.  Green Venture will mail participants step by step instructions explaining how to take the bus to their destinations.

Participants will have the opportunity to sign up for a guided bus trip, where they will travel in small groups of 2-4 on the bus with a trained bus travel guide.  Free bus tickets will be provided, and the travel guide will orient them on how to use the bus while they ride to a fun location for an outing, before travelling back to their starting point on the bus together.

Workshops will be offered at:

Wednesday September 10, 10:30 to 12:00pm- Concession Street Library, 565 Concession St, Hamilton

Tuesday September 23, 2:00 to 3:30pm -Westdale Library 955 King St W, Hamilton,

Monday September 29, 2:00 to 3:30pm Turner Park Library 352 Rymal Rd E, Hamilton

Wednesday October 1, 2:00 to 3:30pm Red Hill Library 695 Queenston Road Hamilton

Monday October 20, 10 to 11:30am – North End Community Health Centre, 438 Hughson Street North, Hamilton

Thursday October 23, 10 to 11:30am – Sackville Hill Senior Center, 780 Upper Wentworth Street, Hamilton

Wednesday October 29, 10 to 11:30am – Dundas Library, 18 Ogilvie St, Dundas

 

Registration is required to attend a workshop.

To sign up for a guided bus trip, please call 905-540-8787 ext. 151

 

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Media contact-

Michael Albanese

Green Venture

905-540-8787 ext 151

gvcoordinator2@gmail.com

www.greenventure.ca

October is Climate Change Action Month!

Hamilton’s 5th Annual Climate Change Action Month is here October 1-31, 2013. There will be lots going on this month to get involved with and to highlight the activities in the community that are addressing climate change. We hope you can get involved!

How can you get involved in Climate Change Action Month?

Take the Challenge

Take Green Venture’s Community Carbon Challenge from September 30th to October 11th for your chance to win a $200 gift card to Mountain Equipment Coop and other great prizes. The Community Carbon Challenge is a fun and interactive way to explore ways you can reduce your carbon footprint over the span of two weeks. For the next two weeks they’ll challenge you with different ways you can live more sustainably in everyday life and reduce your carbon emissions. You can explore different ways to reduce your carbon footprint (and save some cash) during the challenge and even after. For more information about the challenge, visit http://www.climatechangehamilton.ca/community-carbon-challenge.

To participate in the Community Carbon Challenge, you just have to follow these 3 easy steps:

1. Register for the Community Carbon Challenge here

2. Follow Green Venture on Facebook or Twitter (@Green_Venture) for daily challenges from Monday, September 30th to Friday, October 11th. No challenges will be posted over the weekend but that doesn’t mean it’s time for you to quit, it’s time for you to get creative! Additional points will be given to any participant who submits an action that reduces their carbon emissions over the weekend (October 5th and October 6th).

3. Take a picture of you completing the challenges each day and send it to us on Facebook or Twitter

It’s that easy! You can keep sending us pictures of completed challenges until October 18th. Green Venture will announce the 3 winners on Facebook and Twitter, and contact winners by Friday, October 18th.

Tell Us about What Action You’re Taking

Are you already taking action on climate change at home? At work? At school?

Take a picture of it and help us put it on the Hamilton Climate Change Map to show and share what you and others are doing in Hamilton. This map will be used in the Annual Climate Change Report on the progress of addressing climate change and meeting emissions targets in Hamilton to the City’s Board of Health on October 21st

For more information on Climate Change Action Month, the Community Carbon Challenge, Climate Change Map or various events happening throughout the City during Climate Change Action Month please contact Deirdre Connell at 905-540-8787 ext 113 or by email at deirdre.connell@greenventure.ca.

Climate Change Champions Update: It’s Always Bike Month at THAAT Delivery

Climate Change Champion Activity Update

June is Bike Month so we thought we’d use this month’s Climate Change Champions update to highlight a bicycle-friendly organization in Hamilton. THAAT Delivery, a signatory of Hamilton’s Climate Change Action Charter since its inception, brings Hamilton human-powered, local, and sustainable delivery services. THAAT Delivery, newly located at 237 James St. N. (entrance on Severn St.), offers convenient, efficient, and CO2-free delivery with a 500lb cargo capacity of all kinds of goods throughout the lower city from Stoney Creek to Dundas. You may be asking “How is it CO2-free”? Well, it’s all delivered by bike! At the time of this interview, THAAT Delivery had offset 893.54 pounds of CO2e by cycling 1528 km for 1126 deliveries, and these numbers just keep growing!

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During the average week, THAAT is on the road delivering regular customer’s products like magazines and subscriptions, light-weight deliveries, coffeecology coffee, community-supported agriculture (CSA) farm deliveries, and bread and egg deliveries. Not only are many of these products local and sustainable, but they are being delivered to doorsteps across the city with no associated carbon emissions because they’re delivered by bike. Starting in June, THAAT will be out on the road making even more deliveries! THAAT Delivery has partnered with vendors from the Locke Street Market to launch The Local Basket. This website is an online platform where residents can access menus of local growers to buy local and sustainable produce, coffee, and much more and have it delivered to their doorstep by bike. The Local Basket is a great way for people to access local food without driving to a farmer’s market and negating the impact of buying local.

That’s not all you can expect from THAAT this summer. THAAT will also be unveiling a new Vélo Stage which made a special appearance at Bike to Work/School Day this year at Gore Park. The Stage is a partnership between THAAT Delivery and Reuben and Heidi Vanderkwaak, also known as the Pedal Powered Family and the folks behind Kidical Mass, to raise awareness and advocate for cargo cycling by showing all of the great possibilities bikes can bring us. You might have seen the Velo Stage this past Sunday at Open Streets Hamilton on James Street North.

THAAT also received the Community in Motion Active Transportation Award for Bicycle-Friendly Business/Organization at Bike to Work Day this year. This award recognizes businesses and organizations that demonstrate significant impact on promoting cycling and a cycle-friendly environment through infrastructure, promotional programs or other similar initiatives. THAAT Delivery is an active member of the community and has made a huge effort to actively support and promote the use of healthy and sustainable forms of transportation not only through the way the business operates but other ventures as well.

We hope THAAT Delivery keeps up the great work and can’t wait to see what comes next!

– Deirdre

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