Lexus Eco Challenge Finalists Conquer Conservation and Climate Issues to Win $10,000 and a Chance to Compete for Up to $30,000 More

  • 32 Middle and High School Teams Selected as Finalists for the Lexus Eco Challenge
  • Teams to compete for one of two $30,000 grand prizes and eight $15,000 first-place awards
  • Final Challenge Winners Announced Spring 2014
December 10, 2013
TORRANCE, Calif. – Dec. 10, 2013 – Trading cell phones for calculators, and fashion trends for lab coats, 32 middle and high school teams were selected as finalists for the Lexus Eco Challenge – claiming a $10,000 prize to be shared among the team, teacher and school. The winners will now compete in the Final Challenge for a chance to win one of two $30,000 grand prizes and eight $15,000 first-place awards. The Lexus Eco Challenge is an educational program and contest that inspires and empowers young people to learn about the environment and take action to improve it.  Lexus will award a total of $500,000 in grants and scholarships throughout this year’s program.

Lexus awarded 16 teams for the “Land and Water” challenge and 16 more for “Air and Climate” challenge. Winning submissions included:
  • Team 696, of La Crescenta, California, built and launched a weather balloon to collect data to speed regrowth in a local wilderness area. 
  • The Trash Terminators 2.0, from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, partnered with a composting facility to set up a composting initiative, successfully diverting more than 80% of their school's trash by recycling and composting.
  • The Green Team, of Birdsboro, Pennsylvania, constructed a bioreactor to research algae as a renewable energy source.
  • Team Solar Plug Solution, from Salt Lake City, Utah, implemented a solar outlet in their school’s outdoor classroom to help conserve energy and excite the students about solar energy.
“Through the Lexus Eco Challenge teens continue to prove they can change the world, starting with their community,” said Jeff Bracken, Lexus group vice president and general manager.  “In the Final Challenge of this competition we task the teams to impact the world at large. It’s exciting to see teens put their passion behind a plan.”

For each of the challenges, teams were required to define an environmental issue that is important to them, develop an action plan to address the issue, implement the plan, and report on the results.  The finalist teams that best addressed environmental challenges associated with land/water and air/climate are: 

 
Land and Water Finalists
High Schools
Region School Name Team Name School City, State, Zip
Eastern Arlington High School Mission: Mitigation LaGrangeville, NY 12540
Pinelands Regional High School Pinelands Eco Scienteers Tuckerton, NJ 08087
Southern Hoover High School Team Cahaba Hoover,  AL 35244
Coppell High School IB Coppell Coppell, TX 75019
Central Parkway North High School Waste Busters St. Louis, MO 63146
Bartlett High School Greengineers Bartlett, IL 60103
St. Ursula Academy St Ursula Arrows Toledo, OH 43606
Western Clark Magnet High School Team 696 La Crescenta, CA 91214
Clark Magnet High School EcoNarcs MkII La Crescenta, CA 91214
Guajome Learning Centers - Guajome Schools The Preservation Foundation Vista, CA 92083
Middle Schools
Region School Name Team Name School City, State, Zip
Eastern New Egypt Middle School Eco-Mythbusters New Egypt, NJ 08533
Southern Whiteface Middle School Arsenic Arresters Whiteface ,TX 79379
Evans Middle School The Green Jobs Team McKinney, TX 75070
Guy B Phillips Middle School Trash Terminators Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Central Charles City Middle School Muscles Charles City, IA 50616
Western All Saints' Episcopal Day School Eco Tigers Phoenix, AZ 85012

 
 
Air and Climate Finalists
High Schools
Region School Name Team Name School City, State, Zip
Eastern Daniel Boone High School Go Clean, Go Green, Goooooo Algae! Birdsboro ,PA 19508
Grafton High School Phineas & Ferns Yorktown, VA 23692
Southern Southside Christian School Window Team Simpsonville, SC 29681
Newberry High School NHS Renewables Newberry, FL 32669
Central Visitation Academy Visitation Vivettes St. Louis, MO 63017
New Buffalo High School Psionic Mushrooms New Buffalo, MI 49117
Western Clark Magnet High School EcoNarcs Mk 2 La Crescenta, CA 91214
Clark Magnet High School Enviros La Crescenta, CA 91214
Middle Schools
Region School Name Team Name School City, State, Zip
Eastern Christa McAuliffe P.S. 28 Tunnel Savers Jersey City, NJ 07307
Newtown Middle School Mean Green Machines Newtown, CT 06470
Southern Lawton Chiles Middle Academy Ghost Busters Lakeland, FL 33801
Leonard Evans Jr. Middle School Passive Solar Sunday McKinney, TX 75070
Central Byron Center West Middle School Electrical Team Byron Center ,MI 49315
Whitehall Middle School iCompost@WMS Whitehall, MI 49461
Western Olympus Junior High School Solar Plug Solution Holladay ,UT 84117
Olympus Junior High School Windustry Holladay, UT 84117

To learn more about the winning teams, visit: http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3750833
 
For the final challenge, all 32 finalist teams will be asked to reach beyond the local community and inspire environmental action around the world through innovative ideas that are communicated to a wide audience. From the Final Challenge entries, eight first-place teams and two grand-prize-winning teams will be selected and announced in February 2014.
 
In addition to the ongoing contest, the Lexus Eco Challenge also includes educational materials created and distributed by Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education and media company, to encourage teachers to integrate creative lesson plans about the environment into their classrooms.  For each challenge, the Web site (www.scholastic.com/lexus) has lesson plans and teacher instructions, including questions to help guide a discussion about the current challenge topic, facts about the topic, and guidelines for a specific classroom project. 
 
The Lexus Eco Challenge is part of The Lexus Pursuit of Potential, a philanthropic initiative that generates up to $3 million in donations each year for organizations that help build, shape and improve children’s lives. 


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Lexus launched in 1989 with two luxury sedans and a commitment to pursue perfection. Since that time, Lexus has expanded its line-up to meet the needs of global luxury customers. Lexus is now going beyond its reputation for high quality vehicles with the integration of innovative technology, emotional exterior and interior designs, and engaging driving dynamics and performance.  With five models incorporating Lexus Hybrid Drive, Lexus is the luxury hybrid leader. Lexus also offers six F SPORT models and two F models, including the LFA supercar, for top-of-the-line performance. In the United States, Lexus vehicles are sold through 233 dealers who are committed to exemplary customer service.
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Nancy Hubbell                                     
(310) 468-7633                        
Nancy_hubbell@lexus.com

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2013 - 2014 Lexus Eco Challenge - Finalists - Whitehall Middle School
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2013 - 2014 Lexus Eco Challenge - Finalists - Whitehall Middle School

2013 - 2014 Lexus Eco Challenge - Air & Climate Finalists - Whitehall Middle School's iCompost@WMS team 
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