By Michael Jessen
Respecting the environment of the East and West Kootenays is the responsibility of both residents and visitors. With that goal in mind, the Regional District of Central Kootenay has embarked on a program to reduce per capita waste generation by 50% by the year 2000.
People who live here pay based on how much garbage they throw out. Tourists to the area should be aware that their garbage also has to be paid for by someone, so it makes sense to make less and recycle as much as possible.
The Oceans Blue Foundation in Vancouver promotes environmentally responsible tourism and recommends these 12 ways to be an environmentally friendly visitor:
1. Recycle the newspapers and magazines you use.
2. Reduce the number of brochures, maps and booklets you take.
3. Return the publications you don't need.
4. Reuse your hotel towels and bed sheets unless they are soiled.
5. Reduce the length of your showers and baths because hot water is energy.
6. Respect the environment; stay on trails during hikes; never litter.
7. Return things you pick up in nature; scavenging is not eco-friendly.
8. Respect living things; don't remove plants or feed animals.
9. Reduce the number of bags, napkins, and disposable cups you use when eating fast food; have your drink in a glass or mug when you can.
10. Recycle your beverage containers.
11. Reduce fuel consumption by taking public transit; share taxis; take an airporter to and from the airport.
12. Respect the ozone layer; tour our area by bicycle.
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