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  • Save money, and the environment, with these back-to-school tips

    Jul 19, 2017 | Read More News
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    School days are here and now is the time to plan ways to be gentler on the planet and save money, too.

    schoolBelow are a few suggestions from Pima County Department of Environmental Quality (PDEQ) for consideration to reduce waste, save resources, and improve air quality.

    Preparing for School:
    • Purchase school supplies made from recycled content.
    • Buy “new to you” vintage and retro clothes at thrift stores; take old sneakers to stores that recycle them.
    • Use reusable containers, utensils, and cloth napkins decorated by the kids themselves.
    • Let your kids help you put the lunches together the night before. When they are involved in the preparations, there is a better chance they will eat the food instead of throwing it away. Homemade lunches are also more nutritious than their pre-package counterparts and cost less. 
    • Think water instead of soda and use a refillable container instead of plastic bottles.
    Trips To and From School and After-School Activities:
    • Explore walking or riding bikes with the kids as an option once or twice a week to combine some exercise with the school commute and save on gasoline and vehicle wear and tear.
    • Form a walking school bus in your neighborhood and “pick up” kids along the way to school to encourage exercise, instill pedestrian safety skills and begin lifelong healthy habits.
    • Check out carpools as a way to share driving to school and/or after-school activities.
    • Use the school bus, if available, to reduce traffic congestion and unhealthy air pollution caused by idling vehicles around school grounds.
    • If it is necessary to drop off and/or pick up your child, avoid engine idling which pollutes the air where children are gathering and can increase asthma episodes in susceptible children. Park your vehicle, turn off the engine and wait in the shade.
    PDEQ also offers free resources to help teachers meet state standards including customized and interactive air quality and environmentally-related presentations for all ages.

    Let your child’s teacher know that we are here to assist them in reaching their teaching goals. For additional information, visit PDEQ or call (520) 724-7446. 

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