Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Week 2 Day 3: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Today was filled with a wonderful blend of fun and learning. We started off the day learning about the importance of water, why film makers had coined it blue gold and the type of problems engineers have to think about when trying to secure freshwater for our communities. After learning that only 3% of all the water on earth are freshwater, Genesis asked how is it possible that a world can sustain itself with so little water. The answer was, 3% of a hundred might seem small but 3% of a trillion is a lot of water. However, the problem is real, the world is running out of fresh water and in our discussion today we talked about sustainability techniques, conservation techniques and technology that utilizes reverse osmosis to desalinate and turn ocean water into freshwater. It was a very engaging discussion today and students such as Dariela, Miya and Mekhgi shared their experiences with the class to further enhance our discussion.

Destiny from the Bionic A's, looking at a recycling chart to determine whether the object displayed in the front was recyclable. 

Science of Smart Cities group picture 

Later in the day, recycling experts from GrowNYC came to our camp and taught us why and how to recycle. Students learned that instead of sending all of our waste to the landfill and having to pay about $250 million a year to do it, recycling is better for the environment and can even generate income for the city. We were taught simple tips to decide whether an item is recyclable. For example, if a plastic container has a neck and the neck is smaller than its base, it can be recycled (a soda bottle can be recycled, a yogurt cup cannot). Today was a great learning experience for students and instructors, and most importantly we all had fun along the way. 

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