Eco-Schools USA is a program that provides free resources, recognition and support to schools integrating sustainability education in their existing curriculum. Schools select from ten environmental pathways to focus on, including energy efficiency, climate change, biodiversity, and school grounds. Through the energy pathway, the program encourages students to investigate renewable and non-renewable energy sources and understand the impact that natural resource consumption has on public health, wildlife and habitat. New Jersey Audubon provides dedicated staff to support Eco-Schools in their efforts and help them connect with local resources that can serve as models for best practice.
That’s where Hydrogen House Project comes in. The Hydrogen House has been retrofitted to convert solar energy into hydrogen gas. The gas provides clean electricity by way of hydrogen fuel cells, and can be stored indefinitely. The home system produces enough power to run Mike Strizki’s fuel cell car for free. Unlike fossil fuels that release CO2 and other emissions when burned, Strizki's clean energy systems require no oil or gas wells to be drilled, and emit only chemically pure water and oxygen. His non-profit organization, Hydrogen House Project offers in-depth educational tours to schools. The students are guided step-by step- through the process of how the off grid solar Hydrogen House works. They learn how the technology can change the environmental health of the planet.
Eric Stiles, president & CEO, New Jersey Audubon says, “Our consumption habits of energy can impact wildlife and the environment, and we all benefit from exploring a variety of options of reducing our reliance on non-renewable energy sources. New Jersey Audubon’s partnership with Hydrogen House Project provides a unique opportunity for New Jersey students to experience one of these possibilities, and get a glimpse of what the future of energy might look like.”
As the state’s lead conservation and education organization with a statewide network of community-based centers, land sanctuaries and 20,000 members, New Jersey Audubon is well positioned to help schools use the environment as an experiential learning tool. New Jersey Audubon staff promotes Hydrogen House Project as a learning opportunity through NWF’s Eco-Schools USA Program.
“As students envision, plan, execute, and communicate their experiences through the various Eco-Schools pathways – including the energy pathway – they become equipped with the skills, knowledge and tools needed to lead as responsible citizens of a globalized world. These students are the next generation of engineers, scientists, and policy makers” says Eco-Schools coordinator and New Jersey Audubon staff, Jennifer Dowd.
Eco-Schools is an international program in 60 countries. The program, hosted by the National Wildlife Federation in the United States, and coordinated by New Jersey Audubon in New Jersey now has 129 schools registered throughout the state. Eco-Schools USA in New Jersey supports and directly aligns with Sustainable Jersey for Schools point-based system. With support from PSE&G, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Horizon Foundation, and Spencer Savings Bank Eco-Schools USA is able to provide a staff person on the ground to help New Jersey schools reach their goals. For more information: http://www.nwf.org/Eco-Schools-USA.aspx
About Hydrogen House Project
The Hydrogen House Project represents a worldwide beacon for renewable energy. Hydrogen House Project is a non-profit 501c3 organization that is dedicated to world wide solutions for energy, water and air problems. Mike Strizki founded the organization in 2008. His house is proof that there are current technologies on the market that when combined can achieve zero carbon footprint living without giving up any of the amenities. Over the course of the next several years, the Hydrogen House will be transformed into an interactive educational Mecca featuring hands-on demonstrations of the latest clean and renewable energy technologies. Meanwhile, the organization will continue to educate the public while conducting research and implementing renewable hydrogen and other clean energy technologies extending the reach of renewables into every facet of modern life. For more information please visit www.hydrogenhouseproject.org
About New Jersey Audubon:
The New Jersey Audubon Society is a privately supported, not-for profit, statewide membership organization that fosters environmental awareness and a conservation ethic among New Jersey's citizens; protects New Jersey's birds, mammals, other animals, and plants, especially endangered and threatened species; and promotes preservation of New Jersey's valuable natural habitats. New Jersey Audubon is an affiliate of National Wildlife Federation. For more information: www.njaudubon.org.
About National Wildlife Federation:
National Wildlife Federation is America’s largest conservation organization inspiring people to protect wildlife for our children’s future. NWF focuses its education and policy work on connecting children to nature for a nation of happier, healthier kids. NWF’s state affiliate is NJ Audubon. For more information: www.nwf.org.