The public school no. 11 in Buzău claims to be Romania’s first “green school.” During the 2018-2020 academic year, the school was remodeled as part of a project sponsored by the Buzău City Hall and funded by the European Green Deal initiative.

The initiative needed EUR 200,000 in funding, which was obtained locally and partly funded by the EU.

The school came to public notice when Romanian President Klaus Iohannis visited it earlier this week. The President was seemingly pleased with what he saw there as he stated: “We have developed material that puts special emphasis on environmental education in Romanian schools, but today we saw that we have a school here that is already applying a lot of what we think should be implemented in schools.”

A “green school” according to the 2022 Presidential Climate and Sustainability Report, is an educational institution that is committed to environmental issues, manages its resources responsibly and sustainably, and has an open attitude toward the community, establishing collaborative relationships with local co-interested actors, particularly on environmental, climate, and sustainability issues.

The idea is gaining support in Romania and across the European Union.

According to the European Commission’s EU Education Area, “learners of all ages must be able to develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to live more sustainably, change consumption patterns, and contribute to a greener future.” Education and training are critical in assisting individuals to go from environmental awareness to individual and communal action.”

School No. 11 in Buzau adheres to these ideals since it practices a circular economy and is almost self-sufficient: The building’s heating system, plumbing system, and fire protection system all depend on collected rainfall and groundwater. Solar panels installed on the building’s roof generate electricity.

Paper, plastic, metal, glass, batteries, light bulbs, and biodegradable elements are separated from waste. All recyclables are taken to a separate facility. On-site composting is used for all biodegradable products. Buzău mayor Constantin Toma told that the school had an 80 percent selected collection rate.

Because of these environmentally friendly initiatives, the school has significantly reduced its carbon footprint and saved around EUR 13,000 in yearly utility costs.

Although the reduced expenses of the green school idea are clearly appealing, the Buzău mayor informed Adevărul that “the most important aspect of this project is its educational role.”

More than 2,000 students at this school are learning about environmental protection and sustainable consumption, whether through observing how the school is run, special classes dedicated to these subjects, or botany lessons held in the school’s greenhouse (which is irrigated by the same eco-friendly water collection system used for the main building’s utilities).

Source: Romania-insider


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