Spring Gillard

Creative, Not Costly

You can now recycle more items in your blue box (if you live in a house) or your building’s “containers” cart (if you live in an apartment or condominium). These new items include: milk cartons, paper containers, Tetrapaks (e.g. soup containers), paper cups, ice cream tubs and paper/metal containers such as frozen juice cans.

This […]

Miss Demeanour

As of January 1, residents of Vancouver who live in multi-family dwellings (apartment buildings, condominiums) can put their food scraps into their yard trimmings bin. It’s hard for me not to be policing our bin in the back alley and I’ve noticed a few misdemeanours already. For those of you new to the […]

Butt Collectors

I saw my first butt collector yesterday on Granville Street. The City of Vancouver launched the cigarette butt recycling program last fall in partnership with TerraCycle. United We Can employees empty all the receptacles, but then the materials are shipped to Toronto to be shredded, separated and recycled at TerraCycle’s facility. So not exactly carbon […]

If the Shoe Fits

#gallery-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */

I have a thing for shoes. I worked in a shoe store when I was in my […]

Box of Greenwash

When I was at my fave eastside pizzeria recently, they put my leftovers in an earth-friendly looking box. I decided to see if it was compostable. It was called the Bioplus Earth #3, made by Fold-Pak. To give the product even more credibility, it was endorsed by the Green Restaurant Association, an American national […]

Stir Sticks


You might wonder why there’s pasta in the condiment section at Ike’s Café on the UBC campus. More and more environmentally conscious restaurants are providing this compostable stir stick, instead of the unsustainable plastic or wood varieties. UBC provides a full composting pick up service, including organics to any faculty or department […]

Dumpster Living

Gregory Kloehn, a California designer was working in New York and decided to build himself some cheap accommodation. He used an old dumpster and added wheels to make his new mobile home. This takes “tiny house” to a whole new level. He paid $2,000 for the metal box, put in a kitchen […]

Recycling Time

For those of you who live on the west side of Vancouver, a reminder that you can recycle all your “beyond the blue box” items like soft plastic wrap (cheese, pasta), foil (all those Miss Vickie’s chips bags), trays from the take-out, the plastic lids from all those pizzas you buy […]

Containing Homelessness

Atira Women’s Resource Society previewed their latest social housing project this past week. The 3-storey complex is made from recycled shipping containers. The 12 units are roughly 280 square feet, with all the important conveniences (bathroom, kitchen, even in-suite laundry). It costs just over $82,000 to build one of these units, compared to $220,000 […]

Dockside Green

When I attended the education congress in Victoria recently, I also fit in a visit to Dockside Green. I’ve been following the development of this sustainable community since it was still on the drawing board. The Vancity team (the credit union owns the development) gave us a fabulous, in-depth tour of […]