GreenVoice workshops 2013

Photo: Elena Bosshardt
Photo: Elena Bosshardt
By Elena Bosshardt, english translation Valérie Chatelain, traducción española Patricia Bueno
22 August 2013

Again this year, GreenVoice has organized, in cooperation with Passeport-Vacances, workshops for children over the summer. All the workshops aim to raise awareness about environmental issues among children from the city of Geneva.

The first GreenVoice workshop began early in the morning with the visit of the Jet d’Eau fountain. Once the participants arrived, they followed the guide to the breakwater. Then, the guide explained then the history and the working of the Jet d’Eau fountain.

It is not the highest jet in the world, but it is the only one which has a history. It was created in 1886 in order to excess pressure of the factory’s machines at the Coulouvrenière. Thanks to the interest for tourism awaken by the Jet d’Eau, the city of Geneva decided that it should be rebuilt at the end of the breakwater of the Eaux-Vives. The activation of the Jet d’Eau fountain by a child in the group putted an end to the visit.

During that very same week, we also attended the visit of the incineration plant at Cheneviers. All the participants and coordinators took a bus to go to the factory. Before entering, everybody had to swap straw hats for hard hats. We then came closer from the unloading garbage point. The mass of the garbage collected was substantial.

With an oversized plier, garbage was put into the incinerator and the smell became more intense. Some children who were more sensitive than others had to plug their nose.

Nevertheless, everyone decided to continue the visit until the end so as to see the beautiful view of the Rhône, which is right next to the factory.

At the same time, the Passeport-Vacances workshops organized the visit of the Seujet dam. The children were very curious and enthusiast about being able to lean more about the history of such an important construction. Indeed, this dam built in 1995 on the Rhône responds to three objectives. First of all, it regulates the water level of Lake Geneva, then it adjusts the outflow from the Rhône and finally it produces electricity.

At the beginning of the visit, the children observed the drop in the water levels that allowed a river boat filled with spectators to cross the dam safely. For some children, this was their favorite moment.

After this open-air visit, the group went under this dam, in a hydropower plant. This factory has existed in order to enhance cantonal energy production. Thereafter, the children had the opportunity to enter in the control room where everything has been fully automated. Then, they entered in the technical room that is just below the huge turbine. The noise was blaring.

Finally, children were able to increase their knowledge on water and Lake Geneva management since they were at the very heart of this remarkable maritime construction.

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