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Going Green with Chemistry

The Department was awarded a grant by Region 2 United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to influence behavioral change in New York State schools by providing assistance in chemical management and inventorying and green chemistry training to high school science teachers in several locations in the state. A green chemistry candidate school was selected in each locality to feature as a case study in this project. The project was a collaborative effort with the NYS Education Department (SED) and the Board of Cooperative Extension Services (BOCES).

As part of this case study, NYSDEC reviewed each localities' green chemistry candidate school's chemical inventory with the aim of reducing, at the source, hazardous and high risk chemicals used and stored by high school laboratories. The data generated from the school's chemical inventory served as a baseline foundation to measure changes resulting from replacement of traditional chemistry by green chemistry practices. In addition, by providing green chemistry training to New York State's science teachers, NYSDEC will have taught the teachers to consider the life cycle of the chemicals they work with at the school laboratories, from purchasing to disposal, and how it can affect their health, potential liabilities, the impact on the environment and the costs associate with waste disposal.

The case summaries are derived from the longer case studies, representing different localities and school sizes.

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