Going Green At Our Events
by Gerry Ebbers, SCSBC Consultant for Stewardship and Development ◊
Are your events green? Ensuring that our schools’ day-to-day operations are good stewards of the environment has been a priority for most schools for some time. But what about the events we hold? What kind of material do we throw away after an event that includes food? Do we pollute our world by what we use or leave behind? Going ‘green’ now may seem like we are just jumping on a band wagon, but what we ‘say’ by what we use and discard should complement rather than contradict what we are teaching our students.
Start by sourcing local food sources to save on the pollution caused by transportation. Use produce in season even if it means using something novel and getting beyond standard picnic fare.
So how do you go green?
In the materials you use: recyclable or compostable utensils and table ware. Use table ware that you wash rather than throw out. Use cream and sugar in bulk rather than individual packets. Pour out drinks rather than serving them in tetra packs or bottles. Compost waste food in your school’s compost bins (which, of course, you’ve already set up for all the food that the students throw out every day).
Here’s a big no-no if we are honest about being stewardly. Never buy or serve bottled water: most of it is just tap water and often from taps dispensing inferior water to what you get from your community water provider. Bottled water wastes resources in the production of the bottle and the water, in the transportation, and in the disposal.
Does going ‘green’ cost more? Do the math and if you include all costs (like the cost of hauling away the garbage) you’ll find that it is cheaper to go green. And it’s the right thing to do.