Workshop for teachers in St.Petersburg: «Eco-management in schools and simple solutions for energy efficiency and saving resources”

Workshop was organized by Friends of the Baltic NGO within SPARE project and 10th all-Russian seminar “Environmental education for sustainable development – contribution to the future” held by St.Petersburg Academy for post-graduate pedagogical education with cooperation of Committee for Education, Committee for nature use and environmental protection, Committee of State Duma on environment, Commission foe environment of St.Petersburg legistlative assembly, and many other educational, business, NGO and other organizations.

Experts presented experience of Eco-advisers work in schools (they started activity within the Russian-Finnish projects “Step to Ecosupport”), experience and materials of international SPARE project.

The main focus of the workshop was approach to application of the simple solutions in schools for saving heat, electricity, water and other resources, reduction of fuel consumption through minimizing non-efficient transportation, energy efficient way of consumption in general.

Special attention was given to public procurements – both to energy efficient criteria, and to the issue of avoiding or minimizing dangerous chemicals and nutrients in the detergents.
All these solutions benefited to the environment and improve school conditions (heat and light comfort and ecological safety).

These actions will be as much successful as many actors will be involved – teachers, school administration, technical personnel, parents and all pupils.
Participants shared their own experience and barriers for eco-friendly solutions in schools. Energy efficient lighting, forming energy saving behavior – this kind of actions is more or less clear, and gives a visible success. But large scale measures (like modernization of heating system, renovation of the building, and even insulation of the roof) need big investments – and very few schools could do that.

Representative of Academy for postgraduate pedagogical education Natalia Gruzdeva presented first steps for eco-certification of schools, experience of Austria, and development of the criteria for eco-certification, based both on St-Petersburg, Russian, and Austrian experience.
Teachers showed a high interest to the resource of informational-education exhibition ”Ecocentrum” and opportunity to get lessons for pupils here. Within the workshop old Friends of the Baltic’ partners asked about methodical help to organize debates for elder school pupils on issue of environmental footprint. They had got a consultation on how to estimate a personal eco-footprint, how to underline the most energy- and resource-costly components of eco-footprint.

The important result of Workshop became teachers willing to develop together with pupils projects on energy saving in schools, and participate in the annual SPARE competition in 2015-2016 school year.