Santa Barbara Mayor Presents Environmental Youth Awards

 In Beach Clean-up, Community Learning Projects, Environmental Education, Explore Ecology, Science Exploration, Watershed Resource Center

Support young environmentalists on their quest to make the ocean a cleaner place by attending the Environmental Youth Awards Ceremony on Saturday, April 16th, 11:30 am to 12:00 pm on the Kids Corner Stage at the Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival in Alameda Park. Mayor Helene Schneider will present awards to the students and teachers who participated in the 2016 FTO program.

Flows To The Ocean is a yearlong program that educates students about how litter makes its way to the ocean and the impact it has on marine life once there. Since an estimated 80-85% of marine debris comes from the land, Explore Ecology’s environmental educators empower FTO students to know how their actions on land can positively or negatively affect our waterways.

IMG_0745Each class that participates in FTO chooses a project that focuses on reducing marine debris by teaching others how to replace disposable plastic products with durable items. These projects educate and encourage others in the school and broader community to substitute durable products for disposable plastic, Styrofoam products, and packaging that make up a large percentage of marine debris that is washed into the ocean from storm drains and creeks.

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Past student projects include replacing a school’s Styrofoam lunch trays with washable trays, student-created books that are read to younger grades, and influencing a restaurant located close to a popular beach to stop handing out free mints enclosed in plastic wrappers.Last year, Franklin School teachers guided a student project  to reduce the use of disposable plastic cups at their school. They were shocked to learn that over 1,000 cups were used and disposed of every day! As their year-end project,the students raised money to purchase a dishwasher and durable cups for the cafeteria, eventually replacing 180,000 plastic cups with reusable ones.

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Stop by the Environmental Youth Awards on Saturday, April 16, 11:30 to 12:00 pm at the Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival to get inspired and learn about the Flows to the Ocean 2016 Projects!

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