BELS is going green! Reducing single use-plastic across both English language Schools
At BELS Malta English Schools we’re taking action to reduce the amount of plastic waste polluting our oceans and encourage our students to do the same. We are seeking to become the first Eco Friendly English School in Malta & Gozo.
National Geographic’s Planet or Plastic initiative to raise awareness about the global plastic waste crises has exposed the extent of how plastics are polluting the oceans, harming marine animals and fish. After the shocking revelations, the world is now waking up to the crises, and every little effort helps.
Here are 5 ways we’ve reduced our single-plastic use:
1. Distributing BELS Gozo and Malta English Schools cotton bags
In a conscious effort to encourage the use of reusable bags, we’ve been giving out a complimentary cotton bag to every student on their first day of school for over a year. We’re happy to see students using them on a daily basis, both at our schools and when they’re out and about around the islands, and even when they return home.
2. Switching to BELS Gozo and Malta English Schools pencils
We’ve recently stopped producing and giving out BELS plastic pens to reduce single-use plastics. Our students and staff and now making use of BELS pencils, a habit we hope will influence their future purchases. How is this helpful?
The bulk of a ballpoint pen is made from plastic, which comes from the oil industry – the starting point for most of the plastic we use. While there isn’t much readily available information about the wood sources used in pencil manufacturing in Asian countries, it is suggested that local basswood is used. Most western brands source their wood from sustainable plantations. Apart from that, the lifetime of a pencil is said to be longer, meaning you’ll need to buy less.
3. Eliminating the use of plastic in notebooks
Our previous notebooks had 2 sheets of plastic covers – in our latest notebooks, these have been removed. We now give all our students complimentary BELS notebooks that are made entirely out of paper. In addition to reducing our plastic consumption, our students tend to use these notebooks rather than purchase their own.
4. Increasing recycling bins around the schools
Our main concern is to ensure that our whole team is environmentally conscious. We’ve taken measures to ensure that waste is firstly reduced and secondly reused. At the same time, we’ve made sure we have plenty of recycling bins in prominent places around our eco friendly English schools.
5. Introducing digital learning materials
In the past two years both our Gozo and Malta centres had interactive boards installed in all classrooms, as well as launched our e-learning platform. While not directly reducing the use of plastic, encourage use of digital materials reduces the reliance on printed materials.