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Girls Put the "Green" in Greenwich Academy

Caroline Zhao and Maxx Grossman take pride not only in their school's green and yellow gator mascot but also in their green lifestyle. The eighth-graders are members of the Greenwich Academy Green Committee and work to make sure their peers remember the effect they can have on the environment.

One of the girls' most recent projects was idling cars in the parking lot. "We encouraged middle school girls to campaign against idling when mothers are picking up their daughters to help decrease carbon emissions," said Grossman, Green Committee co-president. "I've noticed that a lot of mothers have stopped idling since we announced the campaign."

The students had been concerned with the number of running engines in their parking lot since last spring. This winter, the girls launched the campaign and had their peers submit campaign designs and slogans. Zhao, co-president of the Green Committee, said the winning slogan was, "Turn off the key while you wait for me." It will be made into bumper stickers to send to parents.

Earth Day, April 22, is said to be one of the Green Committee's favorite and most successful days. "Sixth-graders bake everything and sell them during lunch time," said committee member Keara Berisso. Zhao added that Brunswick Upper School students always swing buy and raid the tables, resulting in big money.

The Green Committee is open only to seventh- and eighth-graders. Berisso said she has always been interested in the environment and wanted to learn about with girls who had the same interest. Kayla Johnson said, "My issue was global warming. I thought it would be cool to join a club that could stop that."

The committee was started in 2007 by a group of eighth-graders who wanted to do their part in the community. "Every year, we have worked on different projects," said Zhao. "The middle school building was newly opened in 2007 and is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building . So we decided it was even more important to utilize the resources we had right in front of us everyday."

What do you think of the student's efforts? Do you live a green lifestyle? Leave a comment below or on Facebook !

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