Schools Celebrated For Sustainability Leadership

The Andrews Labor Government is recognising the leadership of Victorian students, teachers, schools and communities in combatting climate change and saving resources by embracing sustainability.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio today presented the ResourceSmart School Awards to primary and secondary students, teachers and volunteers from across Victoria.

This year’s finalists demonstrate the power of student-led initiatives – from campaigning to ban fruit stickers, creating kitchen gardens to feed those in need, developing sustainable products to sell and building solar lights for kids living without power.

ResourceSmart School of the Year award went to Brentwood Secondary College which generates 40 per cent of its electricity using renewable energy, promotes co-mingled recycling, composting onsite and community-based tree planting.

Secondary Teacher of the Year went to Beaconhills College teacher Clare Tuohy for her work to establish a community garden to feed people in need, as well as co-ordinating students to make solar-powered lights for underprivileged students in Bangladesh.

ResourceSmart Schools is sustainability education to Victorian schools to minimise waste, save energy and water, promote biodiversity and act on climate change.

Since 2008, over 1,400 Victorian schools have participated, saving a total of 118,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases. In 2021, the schools participating in the program reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 15,075 tonnes, and cut energy costs by $4.3 million throughout the school year.

The awards categories recognise students, teachers and school volunteers, as well as curriculum leadership and community leadership.

Winners of this year’s awards were announced at an awards ceremony at the MCG on 2 June 2022, ahead of World Environment Day.

For information about this year’s winners please visit sustainability.vic.gov.au/resourcesmart-schools-awards

Quotes attributable to Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio

“Congratulations to all the schools that entered this year’s awards, and for showcasing your incredible achievements. Your sustainable thinking and action are helping Victoria halve our emissions by 2030.”

“Victorian students are some of the most passionate environmental advocates in the country, and the quality of entries in this year’s awards really demonstrate how acting now will create a better future.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino

“Climate empowerment starts in the classroom. We’re celebrating students, teachers and schools who are quelling climate anxiety by learning and acting, inspiring contributions to our goal of net-zero by 2050.”

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