ZWC: First of all, thank you Candice for taking time to interview with The Zero Waste Collective! You have a lot going on running The Eco Hub, and you're the Eco Expert for the Marilyn Denis Show! What an amazing career. When did you first know you were passionate about green living?
Candice: Over 15 years ago, I began my career at The Weather Network, as a weather broadcast I got to see the effects of climate change and changing weather patterns up close and personal. I became engrossed in learning more about how changing weather patterns were affecting animal migration across Africa, where I am originally from. It was also a time when we stated to see a decline in the bee population; I spent time researching and uncovered this green movement in the city of Toronto.
At that time going green was not really a thing yet, but it was for me. After meeting some really great people, I decided to leave The Weather Network and launch the first local green TV series in Canada. Called ‘A Greener Toronto’ (On Rogers TV) it was a show that took an in-depth look at how local Torontonians were fostering and facilitating environment stewardship.
I talked about how to shop for organic food, air pollution, container agriculture, urban issues, green roofs, zero waste, recycling issues, deforestation, plastic pollution, and much more. Since then I have been educating people on the issues.
When that show ended, I went on to produce a documentary series called ‘GLOBAL FOOTPRINTS’ which looked at large issues surrounding climate change, like how the fashion industry effects the planet. The effects of factory farming, each series focused on a big issue and some of the innovative solutions.
I then hosted a pet show and 7 years ago landed at The Marilyn Denis Show.
I think my passion for the planet started early on in my life. I have always been a bit of an activist and have always had a sense of care about the planet, its animals and people.
ZWC: It sounds like you’ve truly seen the first-hand impacts of climate change through your work but also your time in Africa. What I love about the fact that you're on The Marilyn Denis Show, along other TV appearances, is the vast audience you're reaching with such important messages about how to live more sustainably. How did you translate your passion for the environment into a career on TV?
Candice: It has not been easy, It’s been an uphill battle in many cases, as a lot of the time mainstream media is not interested in covering topics related to living green or living mindfully. There are a lot of misconceptions around the concept of going green and that’s thanks in part to how traditional media covers it. They make it seem unattainable and expensive and that is really not the case at all.
The Marilyn Denis Show is an important show in the Canadian TV landscape. We (the team) play close attention to what is going on in the world, and right now green living is pretty hot. So that makes my job really easy, giving me a great platform to try and help people make small changes that have a bigger eco impact. Ultimately this is what we want!
I’ve hustled and made it work for the last 18 years. It’s been great to see so much awareness recently around plastic and its detrimental impact and it’s been very inspiring to see websites like The Zero Waste Collective grow so much!
ZWC: Thanks Candice! Do you think there is a growing demand for this information?
Candice: Yes I do, but I also think that it comes and goes. Like any trend! What I mean by this is over the last 18 years I have seen the movement surge and drop, but I think, especially with the state of plastic in the ocean, people want to make a difference. There is not debate here; we can see what is happening in the ocean very clearly. My hope is that is does not fizzle out, and your community and the one I have built are key to the success of mobilizing mass change.
The other side is that society makes it very hard to make these changes. The industrial revolution and the production of plastic in particular is ingrained in almost everything we use/buy. We need a massive shift in new materials and a move towards more sustainable options. We are not even close to that happening, so ultimately it falls on the consumer.
A great example of this is the green beauty revolution, when that began about 10 years ago, mainstream companies coiffed at the idea that people would care about what’s in their products, but it’s now a 13 billion dollar industry and those same companies are now taking note. It was the consumer that drove this change in the industry.
ZWC: I’ve always felt that way too, that we as consumers have a huge say. Tell us more about The Eco Hub! You've created a beautiful website that connects conscious consumers to brands and companies that care about people and the planet. You've got a Brand Directory, in which each brand you list has to meet a list of Ecological Criteria. What inspired you to create The Eco Hub, and what are your favourite topics that you cover?
Candice: The Eco Hub is a labour of love! I want to give Canadians options to make more sustainable choices. There is so much noise and misinformation on the web about going green. My goal is to bring my 18 years of experience to wider audience. I get a lot of emails from through The Marilyn Denis Show and The Eco Hub is a great way to address those questions.
Ultimately I want to be the go to for eco living and wellness in Canada.
I don’t work with brands that don’t meet my criteria. I don’t work with brands that I have not used. 99% of the brands I work with I know very well and have wonderful relationships with the owners, I know them all well and I think that is what sets The Eco Hub apart. I think it’s so important to really know the brands you are sharing!
In addition to the brand directory, we offer information, news, event listings, travel info, eco tip, DIY recipes and so much more.
As a seasoned journalist it’s my job to educate and help guide people in the right direction that will hopefully in the end facilitate a change in habit!
DIY Tile and Tub Scrub
ZWC: I'm really glad we have resources like The Eco Hub making green living so easy. You share amazing DIY projects on The Eco Hub. Lucky for us, you're sharing an easy DIY Tile and Tub cleaning scrub with The Zero Waste Collective community!
I never knew I’d love DIY, but when I tried one 10 years ago, I was like, WOW, this is amazing! And so easy and so cheap and so effective!
There is something pretty magical about making your own products. This recipe is so easy. It combines three simple, effective ingredients.
1 cup baking soda
¼ cup castile soap
1 tbsp hydrogen peroxide
Mix into a paste
Amazing for sinks and tiles in bathroom and kitchen!! Honestly this is one of my best recipes, it’s easy to make and works so well!
Here is some more information about the ingredients from Candice:
Castile soap: This is by far one of my favourite cleaning agents because it’s so versatile and can be used to make everything from shaving cream to dish-washing liquid and of course my scrub & cleaner.
I’ve used Dr. Bronner’s fair trade, non-GMO, and vegan (love) Castile soaps forever. It’s very gentle on the planet thanks to the fact that it’s free of artificial foaming agents, harsh cleaners, and petrochemicals. It’s biodegradable and this one is packed in a 100% post-consumer recycled bottle. Made with simple ingredients like water, coconut oil, and hemp oil, it’s a must-have in any DIY diva’s home.
Castile soap can leave a bit of a residue, that’s why I’ve combined this recipe with hydrogen peroxide.
Hydrogen peroxide: Is chemically represented as H2O2 and is one of the most common household disinfectants on the planet. The scientific definition states that “hydrogen peroxide kills microorganisms by oxidizing them, which can be best described as a controlled burning process. When Hydrogen peroxide reacts with organic material it breaks down into oxygen and water, meaning it is non-toxic for general use.”
You probably have this in your home already, especially if you have kids, it’s been used for ages to disinfect cuts and minor scrapes. But you can use this to treat everything from an ear infection to foot fungus. Recent studies have shown vinegar and hydrogen peroxide (when used alone one after the other) are much effective than bleach and MUCH kinder to the environment too.
BONUS TIP: You can use hydrogen peroxide to clean mirrors or glass, no streaks and no rinse required!
Baking Soda: One of the most effective and versatile cleaners on the planet, it’s slightly abrasive, which makes it great for scrubbing tiles and sinks, it can be used alone or like the recipe above. It’s great for absorbing odors.
Thanks so much Candice, this recipe seems quick and easy to use! No hidden or harmful ingredients.
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