Bremerton Students Transform Waste Practices on Their Campus

Students at Kitsap Lake Elementary in Bremerton have sparked change on their campus with their efforts to reduce waste. They noticed how much untouched and unopened food was thrown away daily. To quantify this, students measured their waste and found it averaged over 100 pounds per week! They implemented sorting bins and displayed a chart in the lunchroom showing daily and weekly waste totals to raise awareness. Students explored creative methods for dealing with the collected food waste, including feeding food waste to pigs and establishing worm bins for composting.

They expanded their efforts after a recycling audit revealed widespread confusion about proper recycling practices. Students sprung into action and conducted educational presentations and installed signage to clarify what items could be recycled. They also discovered that plastic bags lining hallway recycling bins were unacceptable. This discovery led to a collaboration with the County Public Works and district facilities, who are now working together to implement a better system that will be used across the district. Together these efforts significantly reduced waste and increased environmental awareness, earning Kitsap Lake Elementary an EarthGen certification.

A group shot of students standing in front of a white board that tracks the food waste collected in their cafeteria.
Kitsap Lake Elementary students track and display daily food waste, showcasing their efforts to reduce cafeteria waste. Their dedication to sustainability has led to significant waste reduction and increased environmental awareness throughout the school.