Plastic-Free Summer Challenge: reap the numerous benefits from reducing plastic waste!

August 3, 2021

The City and Sustainable Kingston’s Plastic-Free Summer Challenge encourages you to reduce single-use plastics for the entire summer!

Single-use plastics, commonly referred to as SUPS, are normally used only once before being discarded. Because of their use, size or materials, they are not easily recycled and can pose many risks.

“Flushing plastics and other garbage creates health, safety and environmental risks when equipment fails,” says Julie Runions, Manager, Water and Wastewater Treatment Operations at Utilities Kingston.

Utilities Kingston suggests these alternatives to its top problem-causing plastics:

  • Period cups or washable cloth pads are environmentally-friendly alternatives to tampons and pads. Never flush any period products or packaging, such as plastic applicators.
  • Dental floss is a tough and tear-resistant product that gets caught up in pump impellers. Try biodegradable zero-waste floss instead and dispose of it in the trash.

“Decreasing our community’s plastic pollution saves energy, reduces litter, fosters sustainability as well as many health and safety benefits,” says Tess Wittmann, Community Engagement Specialist at Sustainable Kingston. “We hope this challenge encourages people to reflect on the entire life-cycle of single-use plastics and their impacts.”

To participate in the Plastic-Free Summer Challenge:

  • Register at
  • Take steps to reduce your use of single-use plastics. Already doing great things? Proceed to the next step!
  • Share your actions and tips using #PlasticFreeYGK. Don’t forget to tag @SustainableKtwn