At a recent event to bring awareness to Earth conservation, Burnaby North Secondary School in Burnaby, British Columbia, was given a new plug-in hybrid school bus from IC Bus. The school received the hybrid bus after winning the title of “Canada’s Greenest School.” Sixteen year-old Jennifer Hoa’s Canada’s Greenest School contest entry, a video titled “Burnaby North: Youth in Action,” centered around future leaders having the ability to inspire their school and others in taking green initiatives.
“Our students have worked very hard to be conscientious about caring for the environment,” says Lynn Archer, principal of Burnaby North. “The hybrid school bus presented by IC Bus is a symbol of the students’ dedication to making the world a greener place, starting with their own school.”
Thanks to Jennifer’s winning entry, her school wins a new plug-in hybrid school bus from IC Bus that will help reduce her school’s carbon footprint. The hybrid school bus, worth about $200,000 CN, is up to 65 percent more fuel efficient than standard school buses and emits up to a third less greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to the hybrid school bus, Jennifer also wins:
• A “green” audit of the school by a LEED accredited professional from Morrison Hershfield;
• $3,000 scholarship towards her education; and
• $500 for Jennifer’s teacher, Donna Morgan, to be used for eco-friendly class supplies.
In March 2010, IC Bus kicked off the first ever Canada-wide contest. The open call for entries garnered more than 100 submissions from across Canada. After IC Bus announced 10 finalists in April, online voting determined the winning entry, with nearly 25,000 total votes cast.
Jennifer’s entry discusses the students’ struggle to walk or bike to school due to the twice-daily traffic jams, making it difficult to enter and exit the school’s traffic zone. Her video further explains how using a hybrid school bus is the most effective solution for reducing pollution, thus leading the youth and staff to work together toward implementing a bus system by replacing old buses with hybrids for their “Green Rides Campaign.” Jennifer also outlines ways she sees Burnaby North reducing waste, energy consumption and choosing more environmentally friendly products.
“Today’s students and youth are aware of the need to protect our environment and are making environmental responsibility even more of a priority over previous generations,” says John McKinney, IC Bus president. “The commitment of Canada’s youth to greening schools was evident in all of the entries. It was clear that Jennifer and Burnaby North Secondary had really planned and assessed more effective ways of going green – and the people of Canada made a great choice in selecting Jennifer as the winner.”