At Fairfax County Schools, environmental sustainability isn’t just something that happens behind the scenes. It’s an important part of their curriculum, a trait parents look for in choosing an educational path for their children, and an important part of facilities management. In speaking with LouEllen Brademan, Coordinator of K-12 Curriculum Development, it’s plain to see why we chose this unique school system as our Air Cycle Hero of the Month.
“One of our major goals with our students in Fairfax County is, starting in elementary through middle school, to develop environmental stewards, students that have an understanding of environmental topics and issues, [who] understand that the actions that they take can have a positive or negative impact on the environment,” says Brademan.
Outside of the classroom, Fairfax County Schools is taking big steps toward proper fluorescent lamp recycling with the Bulb Eater® 3, a drum top lamp crusher that helps the school system safely and efficiently dispose of thousands of bulbs annually, from over 240 facilities.
“If bulbs are not easily recyclable, the tendency for staff is just to throw them away,” says Steve Nicholson, Coordinator of Capital Projects at Fairfax County Schools. “The fact that the Bulb Eater®  is actually on site at the Fort Center is a really big deal.”
With the Bulb Eater® 3, bulbs don’t have to be transferred in bulk to a recycling center, reducing the risk of breakage that can release dangerous mercury gases into the air and eliminating transportation costs. By cutting out the need for transportation to a recycling facility, Fairfax County Schools is also reducing their carbon footprint from emissions.
While warehouse coordinators like Mr. Jimmy Bowden are working hard to practice simple sustainability throughout all facilities, teachers and administrators are working together to pass environmental awareness down to their students. Students have the ability to see how their individual actions to reduce consumption and waste can truly make a positive impact on the community, and on the world.
Visit blog.aircycle.com to learn more about simple, sustainable solutions, and the companies who help us make a difference!