Jeff Masters Weather Blog

Scouts can now earn patches for learning about solar energy » Yale Climate Connections

Many scouts enjoy toasting marshmallows over a campfire. But some have learned to make s’mores in a solar oven instead.

The activity is part of a solar energy education program. It was developed for Girl and Boy Scout troops by a national nonprofit called Solar United Neighbors, or SUN.

“They’re the future leaders of our world,” says Laura Tellez, the South Florida program coordinator for SUN. “So I think it’s really important that they know about the technologies, know about different options.”

She says the kids learn how solar energy works. They build a solar oven out of a pizza box, aluminum foil, and plastic wrap.  And they have a scavenger hunt to look for solar panels in their neighborhoods.

“Sometimes we might have solar in our communities and we might not be aware because we’re not looking for it,” Tellez says.

Some scouts even research whether solar might work on their families’ homes.

Scouts who complete the program earn patches that they can sew onto their uniforms.

And Tellez says all the activities are available for free online so anyone can use them.

She hopes the program gets more young people excited about solar energy and eager to share their knowledge and enthusiasm with their own friends and families.

Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media

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