Prevention (P2) for
Agricultural and Vocational Educators
is Pollution Prevention (P2)?
|Pollution prevention became a national policy
with the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990. The Act established the waste
management hierarchy (below) whereby wastes should be prevented or reduced
at the source whenever feasible and safe disposal is the option of last
resort. Preventing pollution in agricultural and
vocational teaching labs is important.
Pollution Prevention IS:
Any activity that reduces or eliminates pollutants prior to recycling,
treatment, control or disposal, such as:
- good housekeeping
- inventory control
- in-process recycling
- product substitution
- process changes
- waste segregation
Pollution Prevention IS NOT:
- off-site recycling
- pollution treatment
- end-of-pipe control
Why P2 for agricultural and vocational
Agriculture and industry rely on clean, safe water, soil, air and an ongoing
supply of natural resources. Plus, when you take steps to prevent pollution,
you are also reducing wastes, conserving energy, saving money and improving
lab and workshop safety. Understanding the philosophy and practices of P2 allows
us to do this.
Practicing Pollution Prevention in the classroom and teaching laboratory is
important because it:
- makes an immediate contribution by reducing wastes and conserving energy
- enhances personal safety in your shop for students and instructors
- teaches students values and practices they will take with them into their
Agricultural educators in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Montana and North and South
Dakota face some definite barriers in managing waste. Because of the geographic
isolation of many communities in this region, it is often difficult to take
advantage of recycling and proper disposal. This is why pollution prevention
is especially important. When pollution prevention is practiced, the amount
of waste is drastically reduced. Proper disposal methods do exist
for unavoidable wastes, and should be practiced.
Where should educators apply P2?
Pollution prevention can be incorporated into everyday
activities and in agricultural and vocational laboratories P2 can be applied
in the classroom, mechanics lab, wood lab, greenhouses and farm
plots, animal confinement areas, welding/metals lab, painting booths/areas,
and any other similar teaching areas. These labs can produce the same wastes
as their counterparts in industry and production agriculture do.
Instructors, students and administrators can be partners in a successful P2
program, not only reducing physical waste, but also conserving resources such
as energy and water.