Earth Day Weekend
Earth Day, celebrated on April 22 each year, is a time for communities around the world to join together and make a positive impact on the environment. We are faced with mounting environmental challenges and it is our towns and cities that need to take a leading role in the fight for a more sustainable future.
As we begin to pull out the garden tools and start digging our hands into our gardens and yards, cleaning up from a long winter, I encourage residents to be cognizant of what our role is in this urban ecosystem. Consider choosing areas of your lawn to let grow out all summer long or plant a pollinator garden to encourages bees. Consider adopting the No Mow May campaign. No Mow May is a call to help wild pollinators and other wildlife in the greenspaces where we live. With habitat loss and degradation as the major cause of wildlife decline the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) suggests leaving lawns alone in May can benefit nature. NCC suggests delaying the first spring mow as long as possible, mowing less often and mowing slowly to allow insects, frogs and other wildlife to move out of the way.
One of the directives in the City of Ottawa’s New Official Plan is the preservation of natural systems and the sensible use of resources. The City’s Official Plan includes a set of policies aimed at preserving Ottawa’s natural heritage system and greenspaces, most of which provide habitat for pollinators. It also includes policies promoting the use of native plant species in landscaping, for both public and private projects, which supports native pollinators and contributes to biodiversity. Taking care of our earth starts at the community level, but the impacts can be global!
For more information on how the City of Ottawa supports pollinators please visit following link and to learn about some ideas on things you can do, not only on Earth Day, but every day, to protect our water system and monitor water use visit here.