An experimental project promoted by CNR researchers in occasion of the EU Green Week 2021 has transformed students of
Liceo "Enrico Fermi" in Bologna into ambassadors of the ecological transition, with the collaboration of the Hera Group,
Erion, and Treee Srl.
Students of Liceo Fermi in Bologna became ambassadors of the ecological transition thanks to a project carried out by the CNR with the collaboration of Hera. 24 students managed to involve 1,500 classmates of school in the collection and recycling of Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). The path was developed over a few months: students were proposed to participate in the European educational project 'Raw MatTERS Ambassadors at Schools', which aims to involve high school students in scientific dissemination activities, transforming them into 'ambassadors', to raise awareness on the problems concerning the future of the planet. An extraordinary collection at school in the first week of June was realised.
The steps followed were:
1. The Fermi group of 24 students took part in two lessons with the CNR scientists on critical raw materials and on the importance of WEEE recycling: “Will end before oil or metals?” by E. Polo and “Circular economy” by A. Zanelli.
2. Supported by teachers, they passed on what they learned to the other students during three school assemblies in which the CNR researchers themselves, the technicians of Hera and of companies in the sector who explained the chemical and technical aspects of the process of recovery and recycling of this waste. Particularly, A. Zanelli (CNR) & M. Mattioli (Hera) held webinars during an assembly with 320 student, while A. Castellano (Erion) & T. Sessa (Treee) accompanied 170 students in a virtual tour of a recycling factory.
3. The students were the leaders of an extraordinary collection, in collaboration with Hera, of all those small electrical and electronic appliances that lie unused in the drawers, in attic or cellar: over 400 WEEE were collected in one week for a total of 220 kilos.
4. Thanks to www.weee4future.eu, which provides a digital calculator to measure the positive impact of the collection of the weee, the students were able to quantify their commitment: among the recovered raw materials there will be about 30 kilos of plastic, 600 grams of aluminum and 2.5 kilos of copper, and the emission into the atmosphere of about 1,250 kilos of carbon dioxide.
RM Ambassadors: Eleonora Polo, Alberto Zanelli, Antonella Castellano & Lorenzo Forini