independent

Thursday 20 June 2019

FCJ students have great idea

Pictured, left-to-right: Olivia McMullan, Aoibhean Hayden, Emer Barry (Education Programme Executive SEAI) and Rachael Black
Pictured, left-to-right: Olivia McMullan, Aoibhean Hayden, Emer Barry (Education Programme Executive SEAI) and Rachael Black

Brendan Keane

Students from FCJ Bunclody have competed in the national final of the SEAI (Sustainable Energy Authority Ireland) One Good Idea competition which is aimed at promoting energy efficiency and addressing climate change.

The students entered the competition with their campaign project 'the fantastic plastic savers'.

The team was composed of Olivia McMullan, Aoibhean Hayden and Rachel Black.

They discovered that in their school over 100 bags were disposed of each day with some only containing a few papers.

They set about reducing the number of bin bags disposed of unnecessarily, and reduce energy in the production and transport of plastic bags.

As a result of their campaign teachers now place a clothes peg with a brightly coloured flash card attached reading, 'Empty Me Please', on their classroom bin but only when it's full.

If the peg is not on the bin the school cleaners don't remove the bag.

The team of students was able to get all the teachers and cleaners involved with their campaign.

Through a one-minute film and campaign on YouTube the students also got pupils in local primary schools onboard and have encouraged others to adopt their system.

The student group was one of 20 finalists in this year's competition out of 200 entries nationwide.

Congratulating all of the participants, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD, said:

"It's fantastic to see the passion and enthusiasm these students have shown in raising awareness of the critical issues facing this generation.'

He said the changes brought about by the Wexford students and other entrants from around the country will 'make a real difference in their local community.'

The competition has been running for 11 years and during that time over 8,000 students have participated and been involved in making energy efficient changes in their homes, schools and communities.

The Chief Executive Officer of the SEAI, Jim Gannon, said the competition highlights 'the determination of [the] country's young people to contribute to a better, more sustainable future'.

Enniscorthy Guardian

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