Two elementary schools in Redondo Beach were recently recognized for their efforts to reduce lunchtime waste in the Grades of Green Trash Free Lunch Challenge.
Both Washington Elementary and Beryl Heights Elementary were recognized for their efforts with Washington Elementary being named one of the top three finalists in the Trash Free Lunch Challenge and Beryl Heights receiving an environmental education grant.
According to the nonprofit Grades of Green, the Trash Free Lunch Challenge promotes greener environmental practices by encouraging students to pack trash free lunches and sort any waste into separate recycle, compost and landfill bins. Last year's challenge helped keep 10,000 bags of trash out of landfills and saved schools thousands of dollars, the organization said.
Washington Elementary was recognized as a finalist in the challenge along with Lunada Bay Elementary in Palos Verdes and Riviera Elementary in Torrance. The final winner of the challenge will be announced in April with the winning school hosting a celebration on Earth Day on April 22.
While Beryl Heights Elementary was not named a finalist, it did receive the "Trash Redux Award" for its efforts to divert 2,700 bags of trash from landfills in one year and successfully getting 50 percent of its students to pack trash free lunches. The school's award came with a $450 environmental education grant from Chevron.
"Your passion and creativity throughout this challenge have far exceeded our expectations," Grades of Green wrote in an email to the schools. "We are so impressed with all that you have accomplished."