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Environmental Sustainability

OVERVIEW

Edmonton Public Schools is committed to making environmentally-conscious decisions. In 2010, we developed a policy to guide and support environmental sustainability initiatives across the District. We promote sustainable school practices through environmental education, protection and conservation efforts. Many schools across the District incorporate environmentally-friendly practices in their daily routines.

POLICY

Policy: Environment (EO.BP)

INITIATIVES

ENVIRONMENTAL STANDARDS

All new schools in the District maintain high environmental standards by:

  • using low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) paints and green cleaning products to reduce air pollution, smog and toxic effects
  • following LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) silver criteria, which involves installing reflective roofing and efficient windows to conserve energy

ENERGY-USE REDUCTION

We’re also reducing energy consumption through:

  • energy performance and infrastructure optimization contracts
  • modernizing old boilers and retrofitting energy efficient lighting
  • installing heat recovery systems, occupancy light sensors and utility monitors

REPORTING

Since 2008, the EnviroMatters Office reports annually on the District's environmental footprint and makes the information available online for staff, students and the public to view. The District continues to expand reporting initiatives by:

  • developing a formal District Energy and Environmental Strategy to encourage goal setting and achievement
  • carbon footprint reporting in accordance with internationally-accepted standards
  • using reporting tools to monitor and track waste diversion rates and utility use. Reports are generated to include District and site-level data on an annual and quarterly basis.

WASTE DIVERSION AND ORGANICS RECYLING 

We participate in the City of Edmonton Waste Diversion Program. Our participation in this program helps the District divert more than 50 per cent of District waste from landfills. Waste collected at our schools and other sites is manually and mechanically separated at a screening facility; organic waste is removed and sent to the Edmonton Composting Facility. Organic waste recycling is now available in all District schools and buildings.

EVENTS

THE LIGHTS OUT CHALLENGE 

Every year on Earth Day, students and staff across the District strive to reduce their carbon footprint and conserve energy. We challenge all schools and departments to turn off lights and other energy-consuming devices for at least an hour to increase awareness of our impact on the environment and help influence actions to reduce this impact.

YEAR-END LOCKER CLEAN OUT PROGRAM

At the end of each school year, Edmonton Public School students clean out their lockers before summer break. Thanks to a new partnership with the City of Edmonton, schools can opt to collect, sort and reuse the materials cleaned out of lockers instead of tossing them in the garbage.  

CAPITAL CITY CLEAN UP

After the snow melts each spring, many schools participate in the City of Edmonton’s Schoolyard Clean Up program. Students clear litter from their school grounds, helping keep their school environments clean and safe.The program runs from March until June and schools compete to be the tidiest in Edmonton.

COMMUNITY ELECTRONIC WASTE COLLECTION DRIVES

Since February 2015, the Centre for Education (CFE) has partnered with Shanked Computer Recycling to support a free electronic waste recycling drive for all CFE staff and their households. The event is held for two weeks, and staff members are encouraged to bring old electronic waste from home and their surrounding community. The program is such a success that it’s now an annual event at the Centre, and the program is expanding into District schools as a fundraising and community engagement initiative.

RESOURCES

TEACHERS AND STUDENTS

COMMUNITY RESOURCES