Sarah Grass, Rethink Red Deer project lead, stands in Purearth Organics in Riverlands, which she called a great place to buy zero waste foods. Rethink Red Deer held its 12th Garbage Free February last month. (File photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)

Garbage Free February a success in Red Deer

For 12 years ReThink Red Deer has encouraged Red Deerians to go garbage free in Feburary.

And last month’s campaign may be one for the record books.

Sarah Grass, ReThink Red Deer project lead, said more and more people are thinking about their garbage producing habits and becoming more involved every year.

The aim of Garbage Free February is to reduce waste going into landfills, promote recycling and sustainability, and get consumers to assess what they’re putting in the trash.

READ MORE: ReThink Red Deer hosting Zero Waste for Homes seminar

Grass said the campaign encourages people to compost food scraps, especially considering the city will begin an organic curb-side pickup program in April, and recycle whenever possible.

This is the first year ReThink Red Deer has reached out to businesses and organizations to join Garbage Free February.

“A lot of businesses in town are interested in moving towards zero waste,” said Grass. “It’s been great for connecting different businesses and finding out what solutions are already available.”

Inviting local businesses helped create a wider audience for the campaign.

The month began with prep sessions, for businesses and individuals, and a kickoff panel discussion. There was great turnouts to these events, said Grass.

The exact amount of people who took part isn’t known at this time.

On Thursday, the campaign officially wrapped up with a party at the Troubled Monk.

Grass said she just hopes it keeps growing next year.

“Also we hope … to continue to learn and practice what we’ve already learned in previous years,” she said.

Another goal for ReThink Red Deer is to help make 2019 Canada Winter Games events green, Grass added.

But first, the organization will set its sights on the EcoLiving Fair March 24 at Red Deer College.

“If people want to learn more about ReThink Red Deer and how to get involved, that’s the place to be,” Grass said.

There will be all-day workshops about different sustainability practices at the event.

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