This past year, GrowNYC's Environmental Education program worked with 1,400 students, engaging them in hands-on environmental improvement projects that assisted neighborhoods, built community, and instilled confidence and stewardship. Our program concentrated on 4 main areas:
Students learn about energy sources using their homes and classrooms as real-life examples and learn why and how to conserve energy. Nearly 400 students built and tested their own working pizza box solar ovens, which reach temps of over 200 degrees, demonstrating the power of the sun for hundreds of classmates, parents and community members.
Students learn about the NYC watershed, its history, and how restoration efforts can improve water quality and the area’s natural health and beauty. They also look at erosion, i.e. causes, restoration, and prevention and the role that trees and plants play in our ecosystem. They put that knowledge to work when they led 17 restoration projects along 7 bodies of water, in 5 city parks and on school campuses. The results: 1,876 trees, herbaceous plants and ground cover plants planted, removal of 17,500 sq. ft. of invasive species, and care for 164 existing trees, including trees planted through the Million Trees initiative.
Green design fosters an understanding of sustainability and conservation both locally and globally by exploring green architecture, planning and design as a solution to environmental issues. Our program includes an overview of green design, case studies of local sustainable street and building designs, transportation and water supply, and 3-D green-design model building.