Toronto announces activities for residents, businesses for April, recognized as Earth Month

Earth Month. Image credit: X/@kaflickinger74

Toronto/CMEDIA: Toronto residents and businesses are encouraged by the City of Toronto to take pride in the surrounding environment and showcase a commitment to sustainability by taking part in the activities and initiatives that recognize Earth Month in April.

It is also an opportunity to get outside and enjoy the city’s many vibrant public green spaces.

Clean Toronto Together registration can be done by picking a day and a spot.

A city-wide clean-up campaign is held every spring led by the City staff.

This year Clean Toronto Together will be held from Fri, Apr 19 to Mon, Apr 22, Canada’s largest municipal spring cleanup program since 2004, inviting residents to join the program.

Community cleanups can be hosted by co-workers, neighbourhood groups, families and individuals to help remove litter from our public spaces including parks, ravines, sidewalks and beaches. 

Participants are asked to register their cleanups on the City’s Clean Together Toronto webpage.

Given below are several ways to join as a group or individual:

  • On Friday, April 19 or Monday, April 22 (Earth Day), Toronto businesses can plan a weekday 20-Minute Makeover.
  • On Saturday, April 20 and Sunday, April 21, community groups, families and individuals are encouraged to visit a local park, participating Toronto History Museum or other public space to help clean up litter.
  • Toronto History Museums will celebrate the spirit of earth, sustainability and community with additional workshops, talks and special programming throughout the weekend starting on Friday, April 19.
  • On Earth Day, Monday, April 22, schools and others can give back and help clean our public spaces.

Last year there were 845 community-led cleanups and help was provided at 223 different City parks with more than 70,000 student, community and corporate participants gave their time to help pick up litter. 

Registration is helpful for the City to arrange special litter pickups, and avoid duplicate cleanups and measure results. 

Volunteers are reminded to come prepared by bringing their own bags and gloves.

Community Environment Days

Popular in-community events, Community Environment Days are run by the City from April to September.

Designed to reduce the amount of reusable or recyclable waste going to landfill, Community Environment Days also facilitate safe disposal of household hazardous waste.

Started in 1991, these events have successfully diverted approximately 600 tonnes of reusable items and 2,700 tonnes of hazardous waste in the last 10 years alone.

Starting Saturday, April 7 until Sunday, September 22, forty-six of these in-community events will be held across Toronto.

Community Environment Days will also be hosted at Drop-Off Depots on Sundays in July and August, more information and a full schedule of which is available on the City’s Community Environment Days webpage.

Free Compost, what goes around comes around

Throughout the season, those residents attending Community Environment Days are being invited to pick up free loose or bagged compost at select locations. 

Created from the yard waste and organic materials, the compost gets collected at the curb.

The City’s yard waste program, and five to 10 percent from the Green Bin program contribute to most of the finished compost. 

Leave the leaves for Spring!

Wild bees, butterflies and moths should not be thrown out by the residents in a yard waste bag year by leaving the leaves as fallen and decomposing leaves feed the soil, insulate tender plants and provide essential habitat for nesting and overwintering pollinators. 

Creating, enhancing and protecting pollinator habitat in natural and urbanized areas is facilitated by leaving the leaves, more information on which is available on the City’s website.

The City’s Annual Spring Clean-up

More than 200 pieces of equipment including litter vacuums, sweepers, front-end loaders and dump trucks are deployed by the city over a four-week period in April to remove dirt, debris and graffiti from streets, bikeways, parks and watercourses. 

Besides enhancing road and sidewalk safety, these efforts also help to improve air quality contributing to cleaner and safer green spaces for people and animals by removing litter, garbage or debris from illegal dumping that can negatively affect waterways, aquatic life, animals, soil, plants and trees.

Spring Clean-up Litter Operations in 2023 was responsible for removing 2,604 pick-up truck loads of waste, for a total of 977 metric tonnes.

Residents and businesses can do their part to help keep Toronto clean and safe all year round by properly disposing of items in the available City street and park bins and not on the ground and report litter hotspots or overflowing bins to 311 on the City’s website or by calling 3-1-1.