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Governments around the world are increasingly fixated simply on data in schools. Meanwhile, really important things like the damage we are doing to our planet only get worse.

But schools can do something about – and many of the children in them certainly do want to play their part.

Last week in Hong Kong saw the culmination of a special Zero Waste Week with a conference for schools across the region, MC-ed by Independent Thinking founder Ian Gilbert. Apart from world authorities speaking about the need for – and the possibility of – zero waste approaches (and the madness of the Hong Kong government building an incinerator that will cause more serious problems than it solves), the conference also launched a ‘zero waste schools’ initiative that will be rolled out in the new academic year.

We will follow this as it develops but, for now, here are the Nine Steps to Zero Waste Schools:

  1. Research – the MISA (Media; Interview; Survey; Observation) approach was well used at the conference
  2. Reduce – just stop using so much of everything, really
  3. Recycle/separate at source – do you?
  4. Composting – The Rocket is a UK invention and does a great job
  5. Reuse/repair – do you?
  6. Economic incentives – you will save money in the long run, guaranteed
  7. Procurement – do you really need virgin pulp toilet paper?
  8. Redesign – how could things be different to be better?
  9. Celebrate – important. Very.

If you want more information then drop Ian an e-mail at ian@independentthinking.co.uk.

Forget sticking a banner outside your school that says what Ofsted thinks, hoist a banner that says you are serious about saving the planet for the children in your classrooms.

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