Green is one of the many things that Camas strides to be. Not green in the color, but in the sense of being more aware of the environment. Things, like recycling and taking care of waste, can both help this cause, but what kind of efforts has Camas gone through? How ‘Green’ is Camas?
For one thing, Camas has done pretty well in becoming recognized as a green school. They are a ‘Gold level’ school in terms of how much has changed to help this and is currently the only school in the area that sorts their trash during lunch.
There have been quite a few changes to get this ranking. One of the biggest ones was the temperature. During after school hours and weekends, they turn down the temperature a few degrees to preserve power and make sure that everything that is not needed, is turned off. Another was idle zones, to make sure that parents picking up their kids do not leave their cars on and use up gas.
For a short time, they were using reusable plates but a problem occurred when people started to throw out the plates, and they were forced to switch back. However, even with some issues such as these, they still work to improve. One of the changes still in progress is the switch from plastic straws, to paper ones.
But, like everything in life, there are some drawbacks, but all things considering, it’s not much. Mrs. Jennifer Dean said, “I don’t think there’s any [Disadvantages], other than it’s freezing. Like, when I come in on Saturday on work, it is cold. I have to get a little space heater. So, yeah, there’s disadvantages to that but overall, I think it’s a good idea.” Plus, even this can be fixed. If you cannot stand the cold, you can talk to administration to get your room a few degrees warmer and the problem is fixed.
There are some issues with others cooperating, with behavior being the hardest thing to deal with. “It has to be something the person wants to do.” Mrs. Alixandra Coker explains. Not everyone takes the time to sort out their lunch once they are done, making it more difficult to implement.
But overall, the efforts to have gone well. “We do have a few good students here who push it. We are doing pretty good- of course, we could always do better- but we’re at a good standpoint right now.” Senior Michela Potratz says.
While there is always room for improvement, Camas has done a fair job in preserving energy and being more friendly to the environment. Not to mention, to lend a helping hand, there are plenty of ways other than sorting trash or joining Green Team. Coker offers another way. “We do a lot of volunteer events, a lot of the time on Saturdays. Planting trees, cutting back on invasive species, trash cleanups, so if anyone is interested, they can come talk to me, even if they’re not technically on Green Team, they can still come volunteer with us.”