Environmental responsibility is incredibly important, and Grand Erie schools are doing their part to improve ecological
literacy and stewardship in their schools and communities.
Many of our schools are working to enhance their environmental responsibility through recycling programs and reducing energy consumption. Grand Erie has also been working with Ontario EcoSchools to nurture environmental leaders, reduce the ecological impact of schools, and build environmentally responsible school communities.
This program is a great example of the difference students and teachers can make to improve our environment. Here are a few of the ways Grand Erie schools are working to lessen our collective carbon footprints.
Energy Conservation: Climate Change is a serious threat to our physical environment. Grand Erie District School Board plays an important role in educating staff and students understand what they can do to conserve energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
We depend on energy for virtually everything in our lives, however, energy use greatly affects the environment through the release of greenhouse gases. Making small changes to reduce energy consumption in our own lives will lead to a significant difference in our overall environmental impact.
Ways you can conserve energy:
- Turn off lights and electronics when you leave a room
- Use energy during off-peak hours
- Set your thermostat a few degrees lower in the winter.
- Space around vents are kept free of obstructions
- Use cold water to do your laundry
- Don’t leave the refrigerator door open
- Upgrade to energy efficient lights
- Close curtains on hot sunny days to block the sun
- Make use of timers on electronics where possible
Grand Erie District School Board & Energy:
- Use of Building Automation Systems to manage equipment
- Retrofit of all lighting
- Renewable Technologies including Geothermal System installed within schools and solar panels on some rooftops
Reduce! Reuse! Recycle! As a consumer society, we produce a vast amount of waste that ends up in landfills around the world. Reducing the amount of waste that we produce will greatly help in the health of our environment. Otherwise, when reducing and reusing aren’t possible, recycle.
Ways you can reduce your waste:
- Buy products with less packaging.
- Take reusable bag with you when shopping
- Avoid disposable plates, cutlery, etc.
- Use a reusable water bottle or travel mug
- Pack a litterless lunch
- Donate items that you no longer use or don’t fit you anymore
- Learn what can and cannot be recycled in your area and recycle.
- Set up GOOS (Good On One Side) bins to use both sides of the paper.
- Send an email instead of a paper note
- Consider if you really need things printed before you press print.
Grand Erie District School Board & Waste Reduction:
- GEDSB has partnered with local municipalities to offer our schools curbside recycling
- Recycling programs available in every school
- Waste Management programs
- Composting programs in select schools.
Water Conservation & Stewardship
“Water is the driving force of all nature.” – Leonardo da Vinci
Water is essential for life. Fresh drinking water makes up less than 1 per cent of the world’s total water supply. Water is a necessity for not only humans but also for all living species. A significant portion of the world’s biological diversity is dependent on inland and marine aquatic habitats. Therefore, the importance of making informed decisions and taking action to protect and conserve our water sources is essential in the protection of our planet.
By educating present and future generations of the value of our aquatic ecosystems we will avoid habitat destruction and the loss of biodiversity and strive towards protecting and restoring aquatic habitats. Effective water stewardship will lead to an enhanced quality of human life.
Ways that we can be better water stewards:
- Take shorter showers
- Shut the water off while brushing your teeth
- Dispose of chemicals properly
- Limit the amount of pesticides used
- Help clean up around steams (parent supervision)
- Recycle and dispose of all trash properly
- Pick up after pets
- Run only full loads of dishes and laundry
- Don’t put anything except water down storm drains
- Fix water leaks at your home
- Choose non-toxic household products where possible
- Use grey water systems (rain barrel to water plants)
- Mulch around plants
- Educate yourself on your local watershed
- Stay informed
Grand Erie District School Board & Water:
- Installation of a grey water system
- Ensures safe drinking water for all occupants with monitoring and testing
- Installation of smart water meters.
Ontario Regulation 397/11 of The Green Energy Act, all Ontario public agencies, including school
boards, are required to share their annual energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG)
emissions in designated buildings and facilities. View Grand Erie’s
2014-2015 report submitted to the Ministry of Energy and Grand Erie's Energy Conservation and Demand Management Plan
For more information related to Grand Erie's environmental initiatives, contact Katie Hashimoto, Supervisor – Energy and Environmental Conservation at: firstname.lastname@example.org or at 519-756-6301, ext. 281197.