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Competitions and Challenges

DC Recycle Right Competition

The goal of this competition is to reward participants for ‘recycling right’, not recycling more, which is more in line with the Sustainable DC goal of sending zero waste to landfills by 2032. The competition instructions are targeted at schools that participate in the competition in October as part of Growing Healthy Schools Month, but they are designed so that your school can do this competition at any time.

Check out pictures from the 2017 competition and read about the 13 schools that competed last year.

Download instructions here.

DC Reduce First! Challenge – Lunch Edition

Did you know that 20 to 30 percent of waste from a typical school cafeteria is actually whole uneaten and unopened items?  The DC Reduce First Challenge - Lunch Edition is designed to reduce food waste (not just compost it) from school lunches. Conduct simple surveys to count whole uneaten and unopened food items per student lunch, and then take actions to reduce wasted items. You can conduct the challenge activity at any time during the school year.

Download instructions here.

DC Reduce First! Challenge – Paper Edition

Did you know that preventing one ton of paper waste saves between 15 and 17 mature trees? Schools generate a lot of paper waste each day. In many cases, this paper gets recycled. But what about reducing paper use in the first place? The DC Reduce First Challenge – Paper Edition is a challenge, open to all DC schools, focused on reducing paper use.  During the challenge, schools will conduct simple surveys of paper waste and then take action to reduce paper usage.

Download instructions here.

DC Reduce First! Challenge - Plastic Edition

Did you know that according to the World Economic Forum, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish by 2050? The problem of pollution in the ocean is so alarming that in December 2017, the United Nations passed a resolution to curb plastic waste. The DC government and many partner organizations are also working to address litter in our local waterways. The DC Reduce First! Challenge: Plastic Edition is designed to raise awareness about this problem and reduce plastic waste in school communities. Conduct waste audits to target plastic pollution and reduce waste to stop pollution before it happens!

Download instructions here.