The City’s Waste Prevention and Green Building Program in partnership with Bethel School District’s Energy and Water Education program created a multi-year collaboration to enhance resource conservation education and programming in schools throughout the district. Through increased participation in resource conservation (e.g. waste, energy, water) programs, area youth increase awareness of the importance of waste diversion, the benefits of composting and recycling, and advanced materials management concepts.
An example of this year’s programming was showcased recently on the Bethel School District’s website homepage. ‘Garbage In, Garbage Out’, shows 4th and 5th graders sorting through five days of garbage at Clear Lake Elementary as part of a waste audit. Another audit will determine the effectiveness of waste reduction lessons.
Using math and science skills, Clear Lake 4th and 5th graders performed a waste audit in their cafeteria, determining what material was food waste, what was recyclable, and what should head to the landfill. Students will now take part in six weeks of waste awareness lessons and then perform another waste audit to determine if there’s been any change in habits. Clear Lake is also planning a Waste-Free Lunch on Earth Day, with a goal of creating as little garbage as possible.