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BISS students work for a better environment

AS the World Expo 2010 approaches, ensuring environmental sustainability to support the "Better City, Better Life" vision has become a prime concern of the Shanghai community. Students at the British International School, Shanghai, Pudong, are embracing the concept of conservation, and school-wide participation has commenced to mitigate the damage we do to our fragile environment.

At the 2007 Borneo Global Issues Conference, BISS International Baccalaureate students were inspired by the remarks of Professor Wangari Maathai, founder of the Green Belt Movement and 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner as well as Professor David Bellamy OBE, British environmental conservationist and broadcaster. A group of IB students subsequently founded the BISS Environmental Group, a student initiative aiming to reduce our impact on the environment. With efficiency, they have sacrificed time from their busy IB schedules and initiated projects to enhance environmental sustainability, both locally and externally.

Green Day, a BISS Environmental Group initiative, is a non-uniform day for BISS Students. Last April, the group hosted a green food fair Green Day with delicious delicacies made with organic ingredients. More than 10,000 yuan (US$1,464) was raised. This allowed us to become a proud guardian of the rainforest, contributing to the extension of the Choco-Andrean Corridor Project in northwest Ecuador and southwest Colombia. In addition, the money raised will fund several environmental projects, including a paper recycling program. Paper collection boxes were established to allow waste paper to be collected by local recycling companies.

Increasing awareness of environmental issues and emphasizing the importance of conservation is the prime aim of the group. On the Green Day, IB students arranged activities with year 2 pupils, educating the future generation through fun activities. They were engaged in workshops including a rubbish sorting competition, rubbish Olympics, environmental trivia and origami. They learned about recycling and conservation in an interactive way. In the secondary school, environmental-themed football teams were formed and participated in an inter-house football competition in an attempt to raise attention about global environmental issues. The whole school had fun dressing in green, environmentally friendly materials.


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