Girl Scouts photo

Girl Scouts to the rescue! A recent study of Girl Scout troops found that young girls can get their families to save energy.

Hilary Boudet of Oregon State University says members of thirty Girl Scout troops were taught ways to save energy over the course of five meetings.

Boudet: “During the course of the troop meetings, they would practice the behaviors that we were teaching them about. So turning off lights, plugging things into power strips and turning off the power strips, adjusting fridge temps …”

Hilary Boudet

Then they used role-playing to practice talking to others about what they learned.

Boudet: “It’s about getting the girls communicating with their parents, getting families practicing the actual behaviors, and then modeling those behaviors to others.”

The Girl Scouts that participated in the program increased their energy-saving behaviors by nearly fifty percent. The parents increased their efforts to reduce power use by about twelve percent.

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Boudet says her research shows that teaching kids to save energy can make a big difference.

Boudet: “There’s a lot of these programs out there, and so to have actual scientifically-tested results that show that they can have an impact is a really big step for these types of programs.”

… demonstrating that Girl Scouts and other youth can be leaders in the fight against climate change.

Reporting credit: Lauren Smith/ChavoBart Digital Media.
Image graphic credit: Created by David McCarthy.

A regular contributor to Yale Climate Connections since 2012, David Appell, Ph.D., is a freelance writer living in Salem, Oregon, specializing in the physical sciences, technology, and the environment. His...