April 6, 2015 by Amy Jolly
Can a hot beverage motivate students to use a “Green Way” to get to school? Yes!
These Millennials are anything but lazy! They woke up early on a cold winter morning to encourage their peers to lower their carbon footprint and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by rewarding them with a warm treat.
With over 2,400 students participating from 8 different high schools across Sonoma County these students prevented 1.75 tons of CO2 from entering our atmosphere during their Cocoa 4 Carpools event. Talk about the power of collective action!
Students at Healdsburg High School lining up to indulge in warm cups of hot chocolate as a reward for using “Green Ways” to school.
A “Green Way” is using the lowest carbon option for getting from one place to another. Active transportation – getting to school by walking, biking or skating – is the best. Every mile you are not in a car saves about one pound of CO2. Carpooling and public transit are also good if you are too far away to arrive under your own power. Avoid driving alone or getting dropped off. These modes of transportation have the highest carbon footprint and should only be used when there is no alternative.
Student Leaders at Windsor High School working together to reward their peers for using “Green Ways” to school.
Right now 60% of Sonoma’s carbon footprint is from transportation and 20% of morning commute traffic is due to students. Sonoma County students are proving that together they create change by educating peers and encouraging them to take action. Cocoa 4 Carpools is part of The Climate Center’s ECO2school Program’s larger effort to inspire young people to take action for immediate greenhouse gas emissions reductions while promoting long-term personal and community environmental action.
We challenge everyone to plan a green way to your next destination.
Amy Jolly is the Youth Leadership Implementation Manager for The Climate Center