Planting SEEDS of Sustainability

From pulling broom on Mt. Tolmie to favouring re-useable bags, purchasing bikes for boarding or replacing the aging boiler in School House, SMUS is spearheading many different projects that reduce our environmental impact. A new initiative, Green Schools, is the next step in our evolution. Over the next six months, SMUS will try to create and document 100 projects that encourage students to be environmentally responsible and to take personal action at school and with their families. For each project we complete, SMUS receives one point with the goal of earning 100 points by Earth Day 2012 and being certified as a Green School by the Society, Environment, and Energy Development Studies (SEEDS) foundation.

We are already more than a third of the way there and, on Tuesday evening, the service and leadership departments celebrated those accomplishments and built momentum for more with a presentation and a discussion of sustainability.

Here are a few examples, large and small, of the initiatives.

Initiative #33: Tar Trek

Tar Trek is a documentary about the Alberta tar sands by seniors Daniel Cameron and Liam Maclure.

Initiative #24: Flushing out Waste

It begins with a litre of water, but will save over 250,000 litres by the end of the school year. Kalkidan Amare, Lihani Du Plessis and Ethel Kiggundu show Harvey Head of House Rio Hong and his roommate Eugene Tang how to displace water in their toilet.

Initiative #1: Sustainability at a Boiling Point

The school really put their weight behind the Green Schools project when they replaced the boiler in School House. Craig Farish explains how the new boiler works.

Other fun boiler facts:
The old boiler was installed in the 1960s when Brown Hall opened.
The old boiler ran at 70% efficiency. The new one runs at 95%. This reduces cost and emissions.
The old boiler was the size of a 15-passenger van. The new ones are the size of a dishwasher and can operate independently.

Do you have ideas about how to make the school more sustainable? Email [email protected].

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