Scarsdale High School's Project Green club members in New Zealand. (Photo Credit: Anna Donovan)
Scarsdale High School's Project Green club members in New Zealand.

Photo Credit: Anna Donovan

Club Spotlight: SHS Project Green

October 17, 2019

As climate change continues to loom over the heads of millions of today’s youth, high school students around the world have begun to take matters into their own hands. From vocalizing their concerns to lawmakers to implementing eco-friendly standards in and out of school, students are championing the conversation of the need for progressive climate action. This is no different at SHS, where a collection of climate activists have banded together to foster a sustainable community at SHS and in the greater Scarsdale area. “We want to involve the youth because [climate change] is such a critical issue that requires our attention and impacts us all,” said Lena Cengotitabengoa ’21.

In the summer of 2018, several Project Green club members attended a sustainability conference in New Zealand to discuss sustainability problems within each community and suggest potential solutions. When given the option to focus on one of the seventeen UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, the SHS students chose to concentrate on Goal #12: “Responsible Consumption and Production.” After analyzing SHS’s three main sources of plastic waste, the group decided to target the usage and waste of school supplies.

In order to gather these supplies, Project Green club members have placed green boxes around the school in classrooms, locker rooms, and offices. A few times a year, members collect these boxes, which are then brought to the club’s meeting room and weighed to get an understanding of the amount collected. The materials are then placed in a pre-bought box that is sent to Terracycle, a company that recycles used school supplies and uses the materials to create a variety of new items. To raise money for the box, the group holds bake sales, sells flowers at the carnival, and sells Project Green shirts to club members for $15. All of these efforts serve to spread awareness about climate change and encourage others to join the fight against it. 

The topic of alarming climate change rates has become a focal point of the issues today’s youth face, so it comes as no surprise that the club has amassed a large following. “At meetings, we start with a short video clip of something that is going on in the world related to sustainability. Then, we have an open discussion about peoples’ reactions, whether that conflict is relevant to Scarsdale, and what actions we can take as a community to solve the problem,” explained Anna Donovan ’20. 

Project Green meets Mondays after school in room 389.

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