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NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Central Bucks High School South, Warrington, Pennsylvania, USA

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Central Bucks High School South, Warrington, Pennsylvania, USA
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Registered: December 2017
City/Town/Province: Piscataway
Posts: 1
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In my county in Pennsylvania, there has been a lack of electronics recycling events for people to properly dispose of their broken and outdated electronic devices. Recycling electronics is important because it conserves valuable mineral resources such as copper, silver, coltan, and gold and keeps hazardous materials such as cadmium, mercury, and lead out of the soil, air and water. Since my sophomore year of high school, I started annual drives at my school to collect and recycle electronics. I decided to do the do the drive at school to educate students about e-waste while collecting electronics from residents who do not readily have access to responsible ways of disposing of electronics. It started out with just mobile devices and then moved on to collecting other items like holiday light strings, which have a high copper content. In the beginning of January 2017, the recycling drive accepted mobile devices, small electronics (like cameras, PDAs, and GPS units), holiday light strings, laptops and printer cartridges. I chose to the timeline of the drive, mid-January to mid-February, to coincide with the time that most people are clean out after the holidays to maximize what we could receive. Collection boxes were placed in both the main office, for parents and other residents to drop-off, and by the main hallway for students and faculty to see and drop-off.
First, I had to find companies that recycle small electronics, laptops, printer cartridges, and/or holiday light strings. When selecting which company to use, I considered environmental commitment (no landfill, incinerators or exports), data destruction, and variety of items accepted. For this drive, I decided to use Planet Green recycling for mobile devices and small electronics, Cartridges for Kids for cartridges and laptops, and 611 Metals for light strings and cords. Next, I worked with members of my school's environmental club to create posters, a blurb for the school newsletter and signage for the collection boxes. In the newsletter, we not only discussed our drive, but we also mentioned the importance of recycling e-waste in general and even listed a few local places that accepted TV, computers and printers, which we could not take through the drive. The recycling drive ran for about a month. When the drive ended in mid- February 2017, we collected about 50 lbs of light strings and 140 lbs of mobile devices, small electronics, laptops and printer cartridges. We spend almost hours separating and packing up everything we received into boxes, using reused boxes from the school, based on where they were being sent. A few weeks after the drive ended, we totaled up the funds we raised- it came out to be slightly over $130. Of course, most of the items we collected were not for profit, it was really based on what the companies could accept and what we had space for, considering size restrictions. The impact doesn't end here; at the end of my senior year of high school donated all the money we raised over three years, $270 total, to Nature Conservancy's adopt an acre program to protect diverse and fragile ecosystems.
I am currently a freshman at Rutgers University New Brunswick. I am planning on majoring in Supply Chain Management with a minor in sustainability. My goal is to create more environmentally sound businesses and work to build cradle to cradle products and processes. Through my project, I became interested in corporate sustainability and product lifecycles can be designed in a way the extents their reusability and conserves resources. At college, I am currently involved in SEA (Students for Environmental Awareness), where I am working on a campaign to reduce food waste in dining halls. I am also involved in SEED (Students for Energy and Environmental Design), where we build a water filtration system or a wind turbine for a science competition. I am currently also on the committee to build an office of sustainability at Rutgers, which will raise awareness about eco-conscious living and plan and coordinate efforts to reduce water use, waste, and energy consumption on-campus. Finally, my Apprentice Ecologists project, also inspired me to write guides, which are posted on numerous Facebook groups, on sustainable living.
Date: December 30, 2017 Views: 5338 File size: 15.7kb, 46.6kb : 615 x 551
Hours Volunteered: 20
Volunteers: 7
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 18 & 16 to 18
Trash Removed/Recycled from Environment (kg): 85.5
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