Pupils at schools across Newtownabbey are taking part in a province-wide campaign to reduce, reuse and recycle.
Schools in the borough have joined over 315 others across Northern Ireland in signing up to a food waste pledge.
Last year, Northern Ireland ranked fourth overall out of Europe in registrations for European Week for Waste Reduction. With so many schools doing their bit, pupils are hoping to get an even better result this year.
Taking part in the programme is Carnmoney Primary School.
“We are delighted to be involved in the EWWR Campaign and we plan to use the resources to help educate the pupils about food waste, this has helped contribute towards the Waste topic of our Eco-Schools Programme,” said Carnmoney principal Mr Duff.
TIDY Northern Ireland, the environmental charity operating Eco-Schools, has been astounded with the amount of schools showing an interest in the campaign with uptake having increased three-fold from last year.
Eco-Schools is the world’s largest environmental education programme with the aim to make environmental awareness and action a core part of school life.
“With nearly 90 percent of schools now involved in the Eco-Schools Programme it is clear to see how deeply our young people care about the environment,” said Carmel Fyfe, Eco-Schools Manager, TIDY Northern Ireland.
“It is wonderful to see so many schools getting involved in this important waste reduction initiative and making the necessary changes to minimise waste, reduce consumption and importantly, change the habits that last a lifetime.”
Hazel Audley from the Department of the Environment’s Rethink Waste campaign added: “It is fantastic to see the significant increase in schools getting involved in EWWR this year. Children are very much leading the way with their activities in school and in the home, and in the broader Eco-Schools Programme.
“EWWR has certainly gained the interest and imagination of the public, especially the Love Food Hate Waste focus – registrations for activities during the week are up over 400 per cent on 2012! No doubt the recent publicity on the amount of food our society wastes has spurred people to action, to try and stop this socially unacceptable aspect to our modern lifestyles.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the schools involved and applaud their efforts.”