Every Thursday in September, two food truck vendors will set up shop between 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. in a “green zone” in front of The City’s Administration Building (Old City Hall). The lunch-time event will help share the importance of recycling composting and diverting waste from the landfill.
“It’s a great chance to learn what can go in a green cart versus what can go in a blue cart and what is considered garbage. I think people will be really surprised by how little trash we have at the end of the lunch,” says Darcy Cairns, superintendent of programs for Waste & Recycling Services.
An inconvenient truth about food waste
The City has found that by adding green carts in addition to blue carts to special events, we are able to divert as much as 80% of the waste from the landfill.
“People assume that food and yard waste in the landfill just turns into dirt. In fact, it creates greenhouse gasses like methane and liquid leachate that have to be collected and treated,” says Cairns.
“To prevent that material sitting in the landfill, we can turn it into valuable compost that can be used on farmer’s fields, in community gardens, and in flower beds.”
Keep on trucking -- and being green
The lunchtime events will also act as an incentive to recognize food truck operators for their creative, green initiatives that reduce environmental impact.
On Thursday, Sept. 4, the Naaco Truck and Cheezy Bizness will kick things off. Join our Facebook event for updates.
“The objective is to recognize the efforts of those vendors reducing the environmental impacts of their businesses and encourage other vendors to follow these practices,” says Chief Licence Inspector Kent Pallister.
LEAF-ing the earth a better place
The event is a collaboration between The City of Calgary and the Leaders in Environmentally Accountable Foodservice (LEAF). While only three of the 48 food truck operators in Calgary are LEAF-certified, many others do meet green criteria, adds Pallister.
“This could include everything from buying local, to using recyclable materials for take-out containers and marketing materials, to having reusable soap pumps and coffee filters,” he says .
The City is working to achieve the Council-approved goal of diverting 80% of waste from landfills by the year 2020 and supports imagineCalgary’s goal to diverting 85% of waste from landfill by
Submitted by Carissa Vescio, Animal & Bylaw Services