Saving the Planet: Earth Day and Recycling at Bio-Med Science Academy
by McKenna Burchett, staff writer
APRIL 2021 – Most students at Bio-Med Science Academy report that they don’t do anything particular to celebrate Earth Day. Sophia Wood, an eighth grader, believes that Earth Day is important, as it “stresses the importance of preserving our Earth and informs us about many actions to prevent and slow the impact [of climate change.]”
Conner Lucas says, “I think it’s important that we are always thinking about the Earth instead of on one day.”
Bio-Med students seem to be doing this. For example, Mady Kohout says, “I’m always recycling to reduce my trash thrown away. I also went strictly vegetarian just over two years ago and I try to eat vegan or use dairy substitutes as often as I can. I also try to buy as much as I can from environmentally-friendly businesses; however, that’s more difficult to do regularly since they are hard to come by.”
Junior Kelsea Cooper is thinking of starting a club that revolves around sustainability efforts “to make more students aware of ways they can make their lives more sustainable to benefit our community and the Earth.”
Earth Day is on April 22, and is the 51st celebration of the event. Earth Day began in 1970 after decades of mass consumption of leaded gas and unchecked factories spewing sludge into the atmosphere. However, in 1962, Rachel Carson published Silent Spring, which began to bring awareness to the importance of taking care of our planet through her discussion of adverse pesticides. After a devastating oil spill in Santa Barbara, Senator Gaylord Nelson started a series of teach-ins at college campuses with Congressman Pete McCloskey as his co-chair and Denis Hayes as the organizer of the events. They held it on April 22, which eventually became the international event we know today as Earth Day.
As for the much-debated issue of recycling at Bio-Med, many students and teachers report hearing that the school combines their recycling bins with their trash bins, and only 6.7% of students always used the recycling bins at the school (according to a survey conducted by The Hive.)
This is not the case though. Neo-Med and Bio-Med have a thorough recycling system.
Jerry Bergstrom, Neo-Med supervisor of Physical Plant Campus Operations, clarifies this: “We have regular garbage, and we have stations out in the hallways with paper recycling, and then we have the bins that you can open the lids on for plastics and bottles. Cardboard is picked up separate. Portage County Recycling takes all of our plastics, bottles and glass, and then our paper gets shredded and is picked up by Portage industries, which is used for animal beds. Palettes are recycled also; they pick them up and reuse them.”
The New Center, and by extension Bio-Med, works slightly differently.
“They’re basically the same program we are; we just run two different contracts. It’s picked up by different companies.”