Let’s celebrate Environment Week all year long


May 30 to June 5 marks Environment Week in Canada. This year’s theme is safeguarding our environment and restoring our ecosystems. Here’s a sample of some of the ways we are doing our part, and some ways that you can help throughout the year.

We’re using energy we create

The cogeneration system at the Robert O. Pickard Environmental Centre converts methane from the wastewater treatment process into electricity and heat for the plant. The methane can also be used as gas for the plant’s boilers, reducing how much natural gas the City needs to purchase. This results in a savings of approximately $1.4 million in utility costs each year. The upcoming cogeneration upgrade project is expected to reduce the plant’s greenhouse gas emissions by up to an additional 1,565 tonnes per year. That extra reduction is equivalent to removing approximately 328 vehicles from the road.

The cogeneration system at the Robert O. Pickard Environmental Centre

We continue to go electric

Electric vehicles are key to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving air quality Ottawa. Switching to an electric vehicle can reduce a single vehicle’s greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 90 per cent. Electric vehicle charging stations have been installed at four City parking facilities, and are coming soon to:

  • Blackburn Arena
  • Bob MacQuarrie Recreation Complex
  • right of way along streets in the downtown area

OC Transpo is also trialing battery-electric, zero-emission buses with the first four electric buses expected to join the fleet this fall. We are always looking for greener vehicles. Join us on Thursday, June 3 for a panel discussion with Earth Day Canada to learn about electric vehicle opportunities in Ottawa.

You can help reduce emissions

Almost half of Ottawa’s greenhouse gas emissions come from our homes and buildings. The good news is you can make changes big and small that save energy and money or take advantage of the new Canada Greener Homes Grant of up to $5,000 to pay for energy-saving home upgrades and up to $600 to help with the cost of home energy audits. You can also hop on your bike more often. June is Let’s Bike Month – the perfect time to take advantage of Ottawa’s growing networking of cycling paths and explore our beautiful City by bike. EnviroCentre is offering a series of free workshops and events throughout the month.

Reducing your waste helps too

Just follow our special recipe. Start with reduce, reuse, recycle. Add repair, regift, repurpose and stir well to help green our city. Check out our handy list of tips to reduce your waste. Use your green bin – organic waste breaking down in the landfill produces powerful greenhouse gases like methane. By using the green bin, you are ensuring your organic waste goes to a composting facility where it is converted into compost without creating methane.

Green bin curbside