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Published on Dec 5, 2011
Burlington, Vermont School Unveils Renewable Energy System In An Effort To Become "Net Zero."
Seventh Generation, the nation's number one green brand, announces a community partnership with the Sustainability Academy at Lawrence Barnes Elementary School in Burlington, VT.
The nation's first K-5 school with a sustainability theme, the goal of the Academy is to prepare students to be responsible citizens and agents for change, in their community and beyond. Located a few blocks from Seventh Generation's headquarters, the school is an international model for using sustainability as a lens for place-based education and service learning. Seventh Generation has participated in a literacy building program at the Sustainability Academy and has provided non-toxic cleaning products for classrooms and teachers. This holiday season, the company will be "adopting" five families of the Academy in need to fulfill the children's wish lists.
Seventh Generation CEO John Replogle announced the partnership while the school unveiled a recently installed alternative energy system, including a solar tracker, funded by a Vermont state grant and in part by Seventh Generation. The system is designed to reduce the school's carbon footprint while serving as an educational tool for students. An energy monitoring display will facilitate discussions on how to track the school's progress towards "net zero."
"As a pioneer in sustainability, Seventh Generation is uniquely able to help students make the connection between the social and environmental issues we face as a society and the role green business and green chemistry plays helping to address these challenges," said Replogle. "We couldn't be more thrilled to partner with the Sustainability Academy to nurture and inspire the next generation of sustainability leaders right here in our own backyard."
In 2012, Seventh Generation plans to donate 880 hours of volunteer time to build an outdoor classroom and natural playground for the Sustainability Academy. The partnership will also include a science ambassador program in which Seventh Generation employees will work with students to understand the connection between personal and environmental health. In addition, the company plans on hosting a book drive with the school to support early literacy and assisting the Sustainability Academy with rebranding efforts.
"The students, parents, faculty, and staff of the Sustainability Academy are excited about partnering with Seventh Generation. Their commitment to our community is real and personal and their support of the education for sustainability movement is a clear indication that they are focusing on the future now," said Sustainability Academy principal Brian Williams.