MAC becoming a CLIMATE FRIENDLY SCHOOL

During a meeting with Green Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons, Ralph Adler and Zella Dowling, Mount Aspiring College students have been learning about and exploring how MAC could be come a climate friendly college.

Group1

NOTES FROM THE MEETING

What is MAC already doing? What can we do better?

Saving energy

Team Green has done in the past and can resume the Switch off campaign (Make it flick stickers and posters) and the monthly Earth Hour (Period 6 Last Friday of each month).

To go further… do we actually need to turn on again after? Do we need it? This is a key phrase, in general!

At MAC, the biggest energy problem for the environment is our coal plant. We could lobby to get it changed. Write a letter to Board of Trustees, Mr Bosley, Architects, Ministry for the Environment.

And we have 8 solar panels. We want more! Continue fundraising. Ask in the letter.

Transport

Make a transport survey. Is it cool to bike? Is it cool to walk? The reward is in itself, health, cool… A hand survey in the year 9 group showed that many students already walk, bike or take the bus to school. Surely more can be done.

For the school’s trip, asking for electric vehicles. Our vehicles are second hand after local ski resorts. Asking them for electric vehicles!

Food

Encourage compartment lunchboxes, more sandwich wraps, these are opportunities for fundraisers. Resume the bring your cup deal at the canteen. https://macteamgreen.wordpress.com/2017/06/22/canteen-deal/

Waste

Team Green has installed paper recycling and recycling in the college, because it diverts lots from landfill (cheaper), because we earn trees from paper and cardboard recycling via Paper4Trees.

We yearly check it is functioning and campaign for its good use.

Improvement: Explain why? “Do I need it” campaign? Encourage electronics use. Good on one side bins. Double-sided printing by default.

“Think before you print sticker” to add at the bottom of emails

Canteen: Do they have leftovers?

School compost, also from lawn clipping.

Measure How important How much $$ How Easy Action
Lights Less important because 80% of energy is renewable Save $$ Easy Switch campaign, switch stickers
Travel to School It would be important but a lot of people already bike so maybe quite good Nothing to school – Save money for families Each individual decision – lots of communication Survey

Calculate how much petrol this uses

Find out who else has done survey already

Travel by School Quite important Will become cheaper but big initial cost Not easy Petition to Cardrona and Treble Cone so they have electric buses

(Also ask for gondola for climate change)

Coal burner Very Important Big Letter to BOT to ask for renewables energy and better insulation
Heat Pumps Less important because 80% of energy is renewable Saves money Easy Switch campaign, switch stickers
Waste:

Paper

Food

Food wrappers

Quite important Not much money Not easy!

Showing them

Notices

We want compost and garden: lawn clippings, leaves, food scraps, canteen waste, food tech waste, a bit of wood ashes

Present Team Green members vote to focus on collecting food waste to a compost and perhaps make a garden for food for the canteen. We need to get the caretaker and canteen support.

To avoid having much work with the garden, we can still do compost and sell it (fundraiser!). In Dunedin, a school has a matching system who wants it who doesn’t want it.

So working on collecting food waste and establishing a compost will be Team Green focus in term 2.

Jeanette's board

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Monthly Earth Hour

Earth Hour poster

Every last Friday of the month during period 5 is MAC Earth Hour.
Please make sure to turn off the lights and unnecessary equipment. We will go around the classes to remind you!
We have watched the college energy counter slow down during Earth Hour and calculated that we save $20 each time. The money saved goes towards more solar panels.
More solar panels, more savings…
And it helps the planet too!

International Earth Hour!

MAC Earth Hour will be tomorrow period 5. Please turn off all unnecessary lights and electric devices. Team Green members will go around the school and switch off the lights at the start of the period.
This Earth Hour is important as it is the International Earth Hour on Saturday from 8.30 to 9.30pm so it is the occasion to make a difference globally www.earthhour.org

Participate!

Eight Solar panels!

Have you noticed the new North Block is now topped with 8 solar panels?!
8 solar panels
Thanks to Team Green members for making the case for them and following up.
Thank you Ronnie for supporting and organising it.
Most importantly, a warm thank you to the Board of Trustees who paid for them.
Happy sunny afternoon!

Celebrate Earth Hour

 On Saturday 19 March from 8.30 to 9.30pm

Earth Hour belongs to you. Celebrate your commitment to the planet with your friendsfamilycommunity or at work – in your own way. A simple event can be just turning off all non-essential lights from 8.30pm-9:30 pm.

This is our time to #ChangeClimateChange!

Solar Panels at MAC

We had the idea and dream of solar panels at MAC for a few years. To explore the idea further, we met Mark Ayre on the 17 September 2014 to understand better and ask questions. Mark lives off the grid near Hawea Flat. He showed us his solar powered – with battery- mobile phone. 

Central Otago is one of the best place in the country in sunshine hours making solar panels a good choice.

Photovoltaic solar panels provide 12 DC electricity from the sun. A converter transforms this power in AC 240 and adds it into the grid. 

This solution is very efficient for a school as our peak electricity usage (that is during school)  is during sunshine hours. Also during the holidays, the excess production can be sold into the grid, earning us money.

 

We presented our project to the Board of Trustees who generously agreed to finance some solar panels.

In 2015, we investigated the college roofs with a local solar panel installer and decided to wait for the new buildings. These building are being built in 2016 so our solar panels will be installed hopefully soon. We keep an eye out for them!