Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Day 44 of our Green Year: Enough Of The Junk

We all get it, sometimes every single day, and we all hate it. Junk mail is the bane of our existence, advertising at its worst and not surprisingly, it is harmful to the environment. All those flyers, booklets and more that we get, result in pollution and lost trees. Why? So that we can think about buying a computer we see is on sale? Why not just look on the internet if you want a computer?

Each year, Americans receive about four million tons of junk mail, and if the energy to make a day's worth of junk mail were used to heat homes, it would heat 250,000 homes. When you think of the millions of trees that are cut down, simply so we can be advertised to, it is deplorable. This is especially the case when advertisers shoot for only a two percent success rate on junk mail (someone buying from something they see in the junk mail).

Some places, like our own post office, has a recycle bin for junk mail, and recycling it is a great idea, but what about eliminating it at the source?
In the United States you have, but as of yet I can't seem to find if it is available for Canada. No problem, there is already a Canadian solution!

The Red Dot Campaign is a Canadian initiative that deals with junk mail through effective measures, it also helps get rid of mail not addressed to you, like pamphlets from politicians.
First, go and download the form letter at, which is addressed to the Canada Post Consumers Choice Program. Fill it out and give it to your letter carrier or mail it to them yourself.
Next, download the "No Junk Mail" notice and put it up in your mail box to say "I don't want it!"
Lastly, get yourself removed from any marketing lists by going to the Canadian Marketing Association and signing up for the "Do Not Contact" service on this site:

This won't prevent all of it, but it will get rid of the vast majority, and that is what Layla and I have done for Our Green Year. No more wasting trees for junk mail with us, hopefully everyone else can do the same.

Thank you to one of our readers, Mindy, who sent us some photos of her son Colin going green. These pictures are also in our photo gallery. If you want to send us photos of you doing green things, send us the photos to