Food Banks Help Poor Families Go Green


Packing CFLs at the Salvation Army for the Energy GreenBox program. Richard Lautens Toronto Star

Low income families in Ontario spend a disproportionate amount of their income on heating; cheap apartments often have cheap electric heating where the tenant pays the bill, about 14 cents out of every dollar. Not having a lot of disposable income, they are the least able to afford the stuff they need to reduce this cost.

Friends of the Earth and Enbridge, the gas distributor, have put together 25,000 Greeboxes to be given out at food banks. "We wanted to do something with a population of people in Ontario who have an interest in climate change but might not have access." said Beatrice Olivastri, CEO of Friends of the Earth.Kits include:

-foam draft sealers for light switches and electrical boxes;
-window film kits
-foam window tape
-two rolls of weatherstripping
-two CFLs
-applications for other programs that supply thermostats, aerators and showerheads.

The boxes are assembled and packed at a Salvation Army workshop that that provides job training to people with psychological illnesses.

What a wonderful idea. as Peter Love of the Conservation Bureau says, the project represents the three E's that should be high on the minds of people living in Ontario: economy, employment and environment. ::The Star

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