Monday, April 21, 2008

Involve the kids... Ideas to share with your schools

Betty's trip out to Crozet Elementary School reminded me of just how much kids LOVE to learn and do the right thing. Their enthusiasm is contagious, so let's tap it this Earth Day.

Here are my top suggestions for kids to "go green":

1-Use reusable containers in your lunch. A typical American school kid generates 67 pounds of discarded school lunch packaging waste per school year. That’s more than 18,000 pounds yearly for the average-sized elementary school!

2-Eat one less meat meal each week. Most conventional meats are resource intensive, but feedlot beef is particularly wasteful. Producing one pound of feedlot beef in California, for example, requires five pounds of grain and over 2,400 gallons of water. It also results in the erosion of five pounds of topsoil

3-Take short showers, not baths. If your home was built before 1992, chances are your showerheads put out about five gallons of water per minute (gpm). Multiply this by the number of minutes you're in the shower, and the water adds up fast! An average bath requires 30-50 gallons of water. The average shower of four minutes with an old shower head uses 20 gallons of water. With a low-flow shower head, only 10 gallons of water is used. (

4-Avoid buying unnecessary things that will be thrown away in a short period of time. Also, pay attention to overpackaging and avoid buying those items.

5-Turn off the lights when you leave your room and the computer when you're not using it! Electricity used to run them comes from a non-renewable energy source: fossil fuels mined from the Earth.

6-Help your parents support local farmers and lower your carbon footprint by
shopping local at the store or farmers market. The average mileage your food takes to get to your plate: 1500 miles!

7-Start a carpool to sports practices. Taking an alternative to a 20 mile car trip each week will reduce your weekly carbon dioxide emissions by 18 pounds!

At my son's school this week, the kids are sharing these through the school announcements. Talk to your school principal - I'm sure he/she would appreciate these tips that help kids make a difference!


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