During Earth Week, schools across Canada were invited to join the Plastic Bag Grab Challenge and Lax Kxeen Elementary School placed third in the province.
Vice-principal of Lax Kxeen Jean Marogna took the lead on the program and organized students, their families, and other members of the community to bring in plastic bags between April 18 to 22. Their third place finish was based on bags collected per student capita.
They collected just under 5,000 bags for the 179 student population — 28 bags per student.
Marogna said her entire office was filled with bags before she took them down to Walmart, one of the sponsors of the program, along with the Recycling Council of Ontario.
The school was awarded $1,000 for third place and the money must go toward supporting an environmental initiative. Marogna said she will ask the students what they want to add to their school, such as a new water fountain.
More than one billion plastic bags are handed out in Canada every year and they can be reused or recycled but often they’re not. Schools across Canada collected more than 2.7 million plastic shopping bags, which is approximately 18.4 metric tonnes of plastic.