Congratulations to Omkar Shende, a Troy High School student who recently won the essay portion of a contest sponsored by the League of Women Voters Oakland Area (LWVOA).
The LWVOA has a saying, “Democracy is not a spectator sport!.” That’s one of the reasons they sponsor an annual Public Service Announcement (PSA) contest for high school students that’s designed to raise awareness of important issues as well as encourage involvement.
This year’s contest was called What Can *I* Do? The Green Power of One and it asked students to explore the opportunities and responsibility of the individual to conserve energy.
There’s more about the contest later, but first…a word from our essay winner!
Being green. You hear that buzzword everywhere, but dismiss it instantly. After all, what difference can one person make? Frankly, a whole world of difference.
The average car puts out over 19,000 pounds of CO2 in a year. Most of that amount comes from short trips to the store, school, or the park. If you were to bike or walk even half of those times, you could halve your carbon footprint, and burn some 9,000 calories over the course of a year. In addition, the runoff of oil from cars that pollutes driveways and streets is reduced.
Only a tenth of recyclable things are actually recycled. If you were to recycle the thirty cans that the average person uses instead of throwing them out, it would stop almost a ton of pollutants from being pumped into the atmosphere. We throw away nearly a hundred plastic bags every year. Reusing those will save 6 cubic yards of landfill space and 10,000 kWh of energy, enough to light your home for months. And recycling all that junk mail and useless paper? It saves almost a hundred trees and 500 gallons of oil.
Most importantly, you can empower others around you to reduce their waste as well. See all those statistics above? Imagine if they were multiplied by a thousand. You can make a cleaner planet for the future, and the League of Women Voters Oakland Area wants you to know that.
Well said, Omkar!
In addition to the essay portion of the contest, the LWVOA received PSA’s on the topic written and created by local high school students. The 1st place winning entry was submitted by Brandon Neal and Kevin Lalko and you can watch it here or see it on our sister station, WWJ-TV.
The 2nd place entry was submitted by a team of 5 students - Shelby Bruseloff, Kelly Giuliani, Allie Ravid, Nikhil Mankuzhy, and Kara Brody and it can be seen here and also on CW50.
Congratulations to all the students who got involved to make a difference in our world and thanks to Renate Soulen, the Chair of the LWVOA PSA Committee, for sharing this information with me. As Renate said, “It is gratifying to foster young peoples involvement in environmental issues, and to see their interest, enthusiasm, and activism grow.” I agree completely.