Despite the school’s prioritization of sustainability with ongoing construction and reducing waste from school lunches, the MV Green Team club seeks to take it one step further.
According to freshman Addy Kopp, the president of Green Team, the club was reinstated this year after multiple years of inactivity due to a lack of leadership. Kopp saw the club as an opportunity to make an impact at the community level.
“I’ve always been really interested in climate change and the idea of having youth be the change,” Kopp said. “I think it’s really important locally because a lot of people are pushing for it nationally, but it’s not often you see people doing it at your school or in your life.”
One of the club’s main goals for this year is to find a solution to the school’s recycling and composting system that leaves a lot of room for improvement. They plan to educate more students on the school and their own carbon footprint.
Green Team is hoping to start a new composting system and work with PathWater, a brand providing reusable and recyclable water bottles, to distribute at lunch in response to the school’s action on removing plastic bottles from school lunches.
“[We want to] educate more students about all [the systems]because right now, it seems like there isn’t a lot of communication between the school’s trash systems and students,” Kopp said.
Along with these smaller projects, the club is currently working toward a more long-term goal of getting the Green Ribbon School certification. The national certification is awarded to schools that meet rigorous standards in sustainability education, efficiency, and health and wellness.
“It would definitely put our school on the map in terms of sustainability and help us push to have higher standards for sustainability,” Kopp said.
With an extensive application for the GRS certification, the club is currently working on various surveys ranging from transportation to and from school to the use of the school garden. The club hopes to finish collecting the required data by the end of this school year to submit the application by next year.
Simultaneously working on various projects and getting the GRS certification has already required a lot of coordination with the school and the district. According to Kopp, the district plans to form a climate change task force of students starting Jan. 2022 to increase communication between the school and students in terms of sustainability.