CVHS student and Environmental Commissioner, Claire Morgan, spearheaded the task of organizing Castro Valley High School’s second waste audit held on Saturday, February 9.
The audit was conducted as part of CVSan’s Green Ribbon Schools Program, as well as to determine the success of the food scrap recycling program installed in September 2012. The results of the audit revealed what materials could have been placed in the recycling or organics carts.
The CVHS team of 66 high school students from Leadership, the Smart Energy Club, and the Red Cross Club, along with two teachers, a parent volunteer, and CVSan staff took on the challenge to sort through an entire day’s worth of garbage produced by 3,000 CVHS students and staff. The extremely determined and enthusiastic group of students sorted through the142 bags of garbage in only 90 minutes!
In this illuminating experience, students found that out of 2,698 gallons of garbage generated from CVHS the Friday before, only 22% was actually garbage and therefore a total of 78% could have gone in the recycling (37%) or organics cart (41%). The results of the audit indicate that in the 5 months since the install of the food scrap recycling program, CVHS has been able to reduce the amount of organics going into the garbage by 5% and the overall amount of garbage by 2%. This is a successful step in the right direction for a school the size of CVHS and a great opportunity for students to determine additional ways to reduce the amount of garbage and organics going into the landfill.
Great job Castro Valley High School for committing to see what’s in the garbage and continuing to reduce waste at school! A special thank you goes to CVHS teacher Myles McMaster and Leadership Student Claire Morgan for coordinating with CVSan to make the waste audit happen.