The Cool School Challenge engages students, teachers and school districts in solutions to reduce energy use, utility bills and polluting emissions school-wide. By conducting audits of classroom energy, solid waste, and transportation behaviors, students identify opportunities to improve efficiency, reduce waste and shrink their carbon impact.   Challenge participants learn how simple actions, taken together, can create a world of difference.  Participating schools in Washington State and around the country have reduced over 3,000,000 pounds of carbon dioxide and thousands of dollars on utility bills to date.

Visit the Eco Schools USA Cool School Challenge website for more information.

Check out these "Eco Tips" from a Whatcom County Cool School Challenge team. While the carbon dioxide reductions and dollar savings numbers they give might not be totally accurate, they make an important point that conserving energy and reducing waste saves money and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

Eco Tips from a Cool School Challenge Team



Feature School: Nooksack Valley High



"Global Climate Change - You Make The Difference" Presentations


Global climate change is a complex problem, but the solutions are simple. RE Sources will help students understand the greenhouse effect and how human contributions affect climate change.  Students play a unique board game that keeps them entertained and engaged while helping them understand that, by making certain choices, they can play an active role in solutions to global climate change.

Designed for grades 4-8, this hour-long program can stand-alone or act as a great supplement to the Cool School Challenge or for a unit on weather, climate or the environment.

Click here for Global Warming- Presentation Materials

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Here’s what students are saying about the Cool School Challenge

“The Cool School Challenge is really fun and it does a lot to help save the environment.” (4th Grade Student) 

"The Challenge was an opportunity to decrease our carbon footprint by making small changes like turning off the lights and power strips.  Not only did the students learn from this experience, but even teachers confessed they had no idea these changes could make a difference." (10th Grade Student)

“My goal with the Cool School Challenge  is to show that instead of trying to save money by cutting school programs, you can save money by reducing energy costs and waste in each classroom.” 12th
grade student shown here plugging electronics into a power strip.