Sustainability at Assiniboine Park Conservancy (APC) is rooted in a connection to nature. We are focused on reducing our ecological footprint and protecting natural resources while identifying measurable sustainability targets.
APC defines environmental sustainability as the responsible management of resources for the benefit of all living species, for present and future generations. We are committed to minimizing our environmental impact throughout our operations.
The following focus areas contribute to our sustainability strategy.
We believe that “reduce” comes first. Then we reuse, and lastly we try our best to divert, recycle, or compost. We are committed to significantly increasing our diversion rate over the next five years.
Our on-site Biovator converts animal manure into compost which is used by our Horticulture team. Visitors will also find recycling bins throughout the Park and Zoo. Most bins are blue and accept empty aluminum, juice boxes, plastic, and glass. Remember to throw your liquids away prior to throwing your container in the recycling bin! Recycling Tip: coffee cups and greasy pizza boxes can’t be recycled, so both should go to the landfill bin.
Other recycling programs at the Zoo include the opportunity to drop off batteries, corks, plastic cards, and disposable masks. We are also committed to reducing our single-use plastic. You won’t find plastic straws and bags at our facilities.
At APC, our goal is to decrease the demand for potable water and keep harmful contaminates out of the local watershed.
Energy & Climate
We are working to reduce the demand for energy, improve the efficiency of energy use, and increase our energy supply from renewable sources.
To achieve this, we are participating in the Portfolio Manager ENERGY STAR initiative. ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager is an online resource management tool used to measure and track building energy and water consumption, as well as greenhouse gas emissions provided with the entered utility consumption.
This tool helps us organize, track and present our energy information, which supports our teams when making decisions about energy.
We are working to eliminate products and chemicals that represent the greatest risk to human health and wildlife.
Education & Engagement
Through educational programming and engaging on-site initiatives, we aim to provide learning opportunities that explore the wonders of nature and inspire people to conserve nature for the future.
Through a variety of initiatives, we are working to reduce fossil-fuel based transportation to, from, and within Assiniboine Park.
- Bike Racks: Bike racks are installed throughout Assiniboine Park, including at the Zoo entrance.
- Electric Vehicles Charging Stations: There are three Electric Vehicles Charging Stations and two level two charging stations located in Assiniboine Park. There is a single charger in the parking lot at the entrance to Assiniboine Park Zoo.
- Bike Maintenance Station: Not only we have many bike racks in different locations throughout the Park and Zoo but anyone is welcome to use our free bike maintenance station located near the Riley Family Duck Pond!
Green Space Management
As stewards of the Park, we strive to protect Assiniboine Park’s ecological integrity and green spaces.
Through internal procurement practices and policies, we aim to reduce the environmental and social impacts arising from the specification of new materials, goods and services.
Sustainability Initiatives at Assiniboine Park & Zoo
Mask Recycling Program
Over the course of the global COVID-19 pandemic, disposable masks have become a serious environmental concern around the world. As a conservation organization, we want to be part of the solution to this problem.
In April 2021, a disposable mask recycling program was launched at Assiniboine Park Zoo.
Visitors can safely deposit their disposable masks as they leave the Zoo in a weather-proof collection bin located at the exit.
This service is being offered in partnership with TerraCycle, an established social enterprise that offers recycling programs for hard-to recycle waste in 21 countries around the world.
When the TerraCycle box is full, it will be sealed and stored for 72 hours, then transported to a recycling facility where the contents are sorted and broken down into separate materials that are recycled and incorporated into new products.
All non-woven disposable plastic-based masks can be recycled, including 3-ply surgical, dust masks, KN95, and N95 masks.