TUPPER LAKE - Tupper Lake High School's Green Team welcomed their fellow classmates back to school Thursday by offering them free school supplies.
For the second year, the environmental group rescued a host of landfill-bound supplies and put them to use, a project they call Recyclemania.
Last spring, as other students were beginning their summer break, members of the Green Team were sorting through bins filled with items from emptied lockers. The conservation-minded students pulled metal spirals from notebooks and rescued paper, folders, binders and pens and pencils.
From left, Tupper Lake High School Green Team members Martina Jensen, Kendall Davison and Delanie Clark prepare the team’s table of free school supplies. The supplies will be available through next week, until they’re gone. Anything left over will be saved for next year and can be obtained anytime by contacting Green Team adviser Kathleen Eldridge.
(Enterprise photo — Shaun Kittle)
"I love animals, and I love the planet," Green Team member Kendall Davison said Wednesday. "It's always been second nature for me to look out for nature. Everything you do helps in some way."
Davison, a ninth-grader, joined the club last year and helped other Green Team members neatly place the free supplies on a table by the school office.
The Green Team was founded shortly after a November 2009 Youth Climate Summit held at The Wild Center. In January 2011, the Green Team helped urge school officials to make Tupper Lake the first Tri-Lakes school to sign up for Casella Waste Management's Zero-Sort Recycling program, which makes it possible for most types of cardboard, plastic and paper to be recycled.
"We couldn't believe how much could be recycled," said Green Team adviser Kathleen Eldridge. "Pretty much everything you'd see in a normal garbage bag can be recycled."
At the end of the 2011 school year, Green Team members began doing some sorting of their own. Club member Hannah Herzog got the idea to set aside reusable items from locker clean-out day, which were sold at a low price the following year to support the Green Team. This year, the team decided to make the items free.
"We're hoping the parents will realize they don't have to go out and spend $9 on a binder," Eldridge said. "There are sustainability organizations now on pretty much every college campus. Yes, they're saving carbon emissions; yes, they're saving energy; but they're also saving a lot of money."
Contact Shaun Kittle at 518-891-2600 ext. 25 or firstname.lastname@example.org.