Life in the Green Lane

Environmental journalist Candice Batista shares video clips and eco-savvy advice from her TV show, A Greener Toronto.

"Pollutants dumped into the environment don't just disappear, or remain suspended in air and water: they enter the tissues of the living things. The pollutants are then passed up the through the food chain and increase in toxicity, a process known as bioaccumulation."-David Suzuki Foundation. It's unimaginable to me that a person would use the Great Lakes (or any body of water for that matter) as a garbage can, but people do and you would be surprised at what people throw into our beautiful waterways. To help kick off the 15th annual TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, Toronto Police and Fire Units dove into Lake Ontario this morning to recover harmful debris and aquatic litter. A kitchen sink and a scooter were just two of the strange things recovered from the bottom of Toronto's harbor. You may be thinking how can a scooter or kitchen sink harm wildlife? Well... think about this: Every year over one million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals and turtles die through entanglement and ingestion of litter, and it's estimated that 80 per cent of this litter originates from land based sources. This year, over 60,000 Canadians will work together from September 20th to 28th to remove nearly 100 tonnes of litter from our shorelines and waterways. Last year, Canadians removed 270,756 cigarette butts, 106,139 food wrappers, 79,646 bags, and 31,732 plastic beverage bottles. These numbers rise every year, which means that Canadians still use our waterways as dumping grounds. If you would like to be an environmental steward for a day, this Saturday, September 20th, Torontonians are encouraged to join the kick-off event at Woodbine Beach Park at 10am to help clean the city's shoreline. This initiative includes WWF-Canada, the conservation partner, TD Friends of the Environment and is led by the Vancouver Aquarium. Visit http://www.vanaqua.org/cleanup/whyclean.php for more.