The Vision of SEAC
The Burbank Unified School District (BUSD) is committed to creating a responsible ecosystem for our educational community through environmental action, leadership, and stewardship. In addressing the climate emergency, the Superintendent’s Environmental Action Committee (aka SEAC) aims to uphold the highest standard of environmental excellence for the sake of our students, teachers, staff, and leadership health and well-being.
The future depends on what we do today. Through our united practice, we envision BUSD becoming a “Green Ribbon School District”, through rigorous action and implementation of environmental initiatives to be recognized at the state and federal Board of Education. If children are nurtured and nourished in an environment fostering our planet's resilient and robust stewardship, they will naturally be team leaders and expect nothing less. SEAC sees this as the eco foundation of what we’re building together with administration, faculty, staff, students, and partners.
WHY do we need SEAC?
Environmental leadership is urgently needed to address the climate emergency. According to the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), the science of climate emergency is well established. On April 4, 2022, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its sixth assessment report: Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change — “climate change is real and human activities, largely the release of polluting gases from burning fossil fuel (coal, oil, gas), is the main cause.”
Increasing local climate changes have dramatically affected air, soil, and water quality, directly influencing our educational system’s health and well-being. Imagine a future where students can safely play outdoors without concerns about heat exhaustion, breathing in polluted air, or vectors. In achieving resilience in biodiversity, robustness in green practices, and resourcefulness in action, we can provide an innovative ecosystem for our students, staff, and administration.
Urgency is necessary to address the climate emergency. Being in action not only improves our overall health and well-being but specifically reduces the anxiety and stress experienced by students, thereby increasing academic performance. Noted benefits are: Outdoor learning spaces have proven to improve academic performance by an average of 15%.
Burbank is in a unique geographic position as 1) a partner of the LA River, 2) a transportation hub with two train stops with a domestic airport, and 3) the intersection of the 5 and 134 freeways. Burbank Unified School District is uniquely positioned to affect change in the community by putting environmental action into practice with greater visibility. As an independent school district, BUSD has to be self-sufficient and collaborate with value-aligned partners on funding opportunities and green initiatives.
(NOTE: Choose 1. These quotes can rotate on the website via a banner carousel)
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” —Margaret Mead
People worldwide should have the opportunity to develop the knowledge and skills they need to build a sustainable future. —UNEP
The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. —Aristotle
The truth is, the natural world is changing. And we are totally dependent on that world. It provides our food, water, and air. It is the most precious thing we have, and we need to defend it. —David Attenborough
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. —Nelson Mandela
One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, “ What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew I would never see it again?” —Rachel Carson
We do not inherit the Earth from our parents; we borrow it from our Children —Antoine De Saint-Exupery
SEAC MISSION — GOALS
- Educate Environmental Literacy
- Foster greater awareness of environmental issues
- Increase STEM curriculum relevancy
- Optimize Efficiency in Water and Energy Consumption
- Nurture Diverse, Equitable, and Inclusive environmental practices
- Improve Health and Well-being
- Reduce Carbon Footprint (Decarbonization and Demethanization)
- Create Resilient Biodiverse Corridors
- Increase Air, Soil, and Water Health Quality
- Reduce Urban Heat Island Effect
- Seek funding opportunities with Local, Non-profit, Commerce, and City groups
- Increase Outdoor Learning Spaces and Gardens
- Engage with internal and External Stakeholders to create urgency with eco-projects
THE GENERAL ROADMAP – THE HOW?
- Create a 5-year strategic plan
- Implement a Steering Committee
- Monthly SEAC committee meetings
- Adopt a systems approach to all day-to-day District operations
- Create an Environmental Management System Regulating Impact of Resource Use
- Empowering micro-focused Subcommittees actively working on eco priorities of the district
- Empowering on-site School Liaisons to relay SEAC information and programs to school sites
- Creating an open communications channel with the educational community and district
- Creating a circular system for assessing and decision-making about the district’s energy, water, and air quality and usage
- -Set Policy in Compliance and in Precedence with California state regulations on Recycling, Waste, Energy, and Water Use
- Promoting and managing district-wide campaigns to Re-think, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Ride, Repurpose, Refuse
- Coordinating sustainability efforts with local Burbank organizations and Parent Teacher Associations
- Creating collaborative opportunities with the City of Burbank
- Partnering with local Environmental groups like Burbank Eco Council, Burbank Recycling Center, Burbank Water Power, Tree People
- Focusing on eight main areas impact: Education, Energy, Water, Waste, Purchasing, Transportation, Green Spaces, and Community
- Seek aligned grants and external funds to reduce the District’s operating bottom line
- Identify and Implement Green/LEEDs certified Infrastructure opportunities
- Electrifying school fleet of buses and intradistrict transfer
- Identify Environmental Career Pathways
- Comply with state and federal environmental regulations
- Install Solar Panels and Increase Renewable Energy Use
- Identify and implement waste reduction strategies
WHO IS SEAC?
The school board members of Burbank Unified School District requested the creation of a committee to address climate emergency preparedness for the future of their schools and students. The Superintendent’s Environmental Action Committee comprises faculty, staff, school board members, community leaders, parents, and students dedicated to environmental excellence. They serve on the committee as volunteers with diverse backgrounds and expertise to provide holistic eco solutions for the school district.
WANT TO GET INVOLVED?
This is a big game we are playing, and we need committed people from diverse backgrounds and various environmental expertise.
Please contact email@example.com