Sustainability

Community Gardens Do More Than Grow Vegetables

Everyone wants to save the planet. But imagine if you could save the planet while also fostering a sense of community, providing opportunities for intergenerational and cross-cultural connection, stimulating social interaction, improving people’s quality of life, promoting health, encouraging self-reliance, reducing family food expenses, beautifying neighborhoods, creating income opportunities, and helping the poor. (Whew!) That’s…

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Summit Bechtel Reserve
The Summit Gets Sustainability Stamp of Approval

In 2013, the BSA’s Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia opened to great fanfare. While most Scouts were attracted to the camp’s world-class zip lines, canopy tours, mountain-bike trails, shooting ranges, and skateboarding facilities, many adults (and more than a few Scouts) were attracted to something else: the Summit’s commitment to sustainability. Of course, saying…

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Transatlantic Council Embraces Sustainability

In 2015, staff and volunteers from the Boy Scouts of America’s Transatlantic Council gathered to develop a five-year strategic plan dubbed 2020 Vision. Its goal was identify and address the unique challenges faced by the sprawling council, which serves military and expatriate families in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. (In much the same way,…

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Sustainability Lessons That Last a Lifetime

In July 2011, an Eagle Scout named John Tickle used CPR to save the life of a heart attack victim at a golf tournament. That would not be unusual, except that Tickle was 69 years old at the time. Nearly six decades earlier, he had promised to “help other people at all times” (in the…

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Making Sustainability Pay Off Now

For many Scout councils, the biggest downside to sustainability is the upfront cost. They know sustainability is the right thing to do and they know monetary savings will mount up over the long term, but none of that matters when this year’s budget is tight. Take the example of low-flow toilets. Say you replace a…

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