Many people don't think twice about how our community will manage waste decades from now, but this year's Future City competition helped to change that.
This annual engineering competition challenges middle school students to imagine, research, design, and build communities of the future that showcase their solution to a citywide sustainability issue.
"Future City Central Pennsylvania was founded 10 years ago to bring an amazing learning experience to the local schools here in the area," said Bill Sutton, Future City Regional Coordinator. "We have exposed children to the world of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) that they otherwise wouldn't be exposed to. Students are allowed to dream, create, work in teams and solve real world problems."
The 2015-2016 competition tackled a fundamental topic related to LCSWMA's core mission of responsible solid waste management. The "Waste Not, Want Not" theme of the competition required students to design waste management systems, which looked at issues such as collection, separation, processing, recycling, health and safety, energy efficiency, environmental impact and cost.
In an effort to give these students real world experience for their project, LCSWMA welcomed more than 100 competitors at our three Lancaster facilities to get a behind-the-scenes look at our operations.
During the field trips, students learned about the importance of LCSWMA's Integrated System, which is used to manage the municipal solid waste (MSW) and recyclables generated in Lancaster County and MSW in Dauphin County in an environmentally safe, reliable and efficient manner.
In addition to learning about responsible and progressive waste management, students also had the opportunity to learn about our renewable energy projects, including solar energy, wind energy, landfill gas-to-energy and waste-to-energy.
Then, on January 30th, students put their learning experiences to good use as they gathered at the State Museum in Harrisburg for a regional competition, where a panel of judges reviewed their projects.
Out of 20 teams, Warwick Middle School took first place, Cornerstone Home School Group placed second, Donegal Middle School placed third and Middletown Middle School placed fourth. LCSWMA was privileged to give tours to all four of the school groups.
Warwick Middle School moved on to the National Finals where they placed 11th in the country. Congratulations to all competitors and thank you for helping to make the world a better, more sustainable place!
Warwick Middle School Students