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New Environmental Program Starting at 4 Greenpoint Schools in January

By Ben Fractenberg | November 18, 2015 3:02pm
 Students from P.S. 34 in Greenpoint who will take part in the new Eco-Schools environmental program.
Students from P.S. 34 in Greenpoint who will take part in the new Eco-Schools environmental program.
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National Wildlife Federation

BROOKLYN — A new environmental education program funded by $1.75 million in ExxonMobile settlement money will begin in four Greenpoint schools this January, officials announced Wednesday.

The Greenpoint Eco-Schools program will provide each school with a full-time “sustainability coach” who will help develop environmental programs with students, staff and parents. The program will serve 1,800 students in P.S. 31, P.S. 34, P.S. 110 and M.S. 126.

“Greenpoint Eco-Schools will provide thousands of Greenpoint students, teachers and parents with the resources and training to create a more sustainable environment,” New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a statement.

“By voting to implement this groundbreaking program, Greenpoint’s families chose to invest in the future of their community. We are creating the next generation of environmental stewards out of one of the worst industrial disasters in our city’s history.”

The money was part of a settlement for the Greenpoint oil spill, which was discovered in the late ‘70s.

Part of the money was used to set up a grant to award funds to programs chosen by Greenpoint residents.

The schools will also use National Wildlife Federation guides to reduce waste by 25 percent, energy use by 10 percent and water use by five percent annually.

“Sustainability Coaches from the National Wildlife Federation will work directly with students and teachers on hands-on projects, from designing green spaces and planting trees to understanding water quality issues in Newtown Creek,” said NWF president and CEO Collin O’Mara in a statement.

“This will help remediate Greenpoint’s natural resources and help students become critical thinkers and problem solvers, in Greenpoint and beyond.”