The Canyon Crest Academy Eco Club is aiming for a second win in the Lexus Eco Challenge, a national contest that encourages teenagers to take action to help the environment. Last year, the club's project of filling car tires with air to cut down on gas consumption netted it a $3,000 prize. The club is hoping this year's project, which involved recycling 6,347 plastic bottles, will get the same reward.
To represent the bottles saved, club members used the nonrecyclable bottle caps to create an impressive work of art. The students created a beach scene with a palm tree, ocean and a Canyon Crest Raven in the sun.
For two weeks, the Eco Club encouraged fellow students to recycle bottles, something the club said often gets forgotten in the daily recycling program it helped implement this year.
The plastic in the bottles requires large amounts of oil for its production, so recycling the bottles is a way to cut down on fossil fuel use.
The Eco Club estimated that this project alone saved about 68.5 gallons of oil from being used and about 100 kilograms of carbon dioxide gas from being released.
The resulting mural represents the drive's success as well as "how something useful and pretty can be created," member Ronit Abramson said.
Not only did the club help hammer home the recycling message at Canyon Crest, it also helped spread the word by visiting Del Mar Hills Academy.
The winners of the Lexus Challenge should be announced by March.