A small Finnish town is bidding to become the world’s first zero-waste town—with the help of its youngest residents.
Since 2012 the town of Ii has invested heavily in geothermal, solar and wind energy projects, halving its CO2 emissions from 2007 to 2015.
Among other measures, Ii’s 10,000 residents are switching to electric cars and use smart metres, but they believe the key to continuing success is education from a very young age.
At school, children monitor water, heat and electricity consumption, classroom temperature and check that all electrical devices are switched off when not being used.
Today, Ii has an energy surplus, producing up to 10 times more than it consumes. Taxes have been reduced and $2.5 million saved from the annual budget.
“It’s the end for fossil fuels,” says town mayor Ari Alatossava. “If we can do it in a small town with few resources and benefit so much from it, no one has an excuse anymore.” [Source: BBC News]