Edging towards East Brunswick’s environment
Check out how environmentally friendly East Brunswick is as a whole!
June 8, 2023
Field Hockey players and softball players are celebrating the smell of fresh lumber near the bottom of the range, as the woods are being cut down for a new field hockey/softball field. However, as they beam over finally getting a much-needed turf field, this change has altered the lives of many animals and the environment in general. The question arises, was cutting down the woods the best solution?
The woods at EBHS is home to many birds, squirrels, and even the occasional groundhog. Nevertheless, the countless trees and plants that absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen. Cutting them down will have many lasting effects on the environment. In addition to this, arsenic was found in the Orchards. Arsenic can be very harmful to those animals that have consumed the soil. The arsenic likely results from agriculture in the orchards in past years. Overall, recent EBHS history reveals a step in the wrong direction as humans attempt to combat many environmental issues.
It’s not all bad here in East Brunswick though. We have many programs in place to move forward with positive change. This includes the installation of the community garden, the salamander crossing project, freecycling, and youth council sponsored park cleanups.
The community garden is located in the Municipal center and was established in 2009. This garden offers many benefits to our community in terms of the environment, like housing a bee hotel. Bees are currently endangered species, this hotel protects many of the endangered hives. With flowers for the bees to pollinate, the community garden serves as an effective and very environmentally friendly space.
The salamander crossing project combines saving an endangered species with some late-night fun. The endangered Salamander species typically breeds in the vernal pools, off of Beekman Road in EB, and migrate to the woods across the road in early spring. To protect these species as they cross this main road, East Brunswick actually shuts down the road temporarily for these salamanders to cross and encourages people to come watch these salamanders cross the road at night. To find out updates on the date for 2024, you can check friendsebec.com.
Freecycling is a program to maximize reusing materials in East Brunswick, as it provides a foundation for getting rid of clutter and preventing items from being put into the landfill. Essentially, you can bring in items you may have planned to throw away, or you no longer need, and it allows for people to take them for free and put them to use somewhere else. It conquers the three R’s, reduce, reuse, and recycle, all at once. The Friends of the Library usually host this event semi-annually, and you can check for upcoming dates and more information on the friendsebec.com.
Lastly, East Brunswick is a home to 17 parks open to the public, and with time, they get dirty. Youth council sponsors ‘community park cleanups’ and provides many highschoolers with the opportunity to give back to the environment by cleaning these parks. This event opens many young eyes to negative impact many have on the environment, and Sophomore Kiara Cruz even recounts “a bunch of trash that was surprisingly enough right next to the trash can” when she was picking up trash at Bicentennial Park. Overall, this program is very environmentally friendly and hopes to reduce the damaging effects of humans.
There are countless opportunities to get involved with protecting your environment in East Brunswick. Although it is important to acknowledge the harmful impact East Brunswick has on the environment, it’s equally important to work to have a larger impact on protecting the environment. As an EBHS student, Sophomore Grace Gogola suggests “getting out of the habit of using one-use items” by using reusable water bottles to reduce plastic packaging. East Brunswick has countless opportunities for people of all ages to further their relationship with nature and the environment.