body bg

Inform-Banner

Sustainable Schools: Making Energy Efficiency a Lifestyle Priority

  • Year: 2004
  • Author: Purnell, Ken; Sinclair, Mark; Gralton, Anna
  • Journal Name: Australian Journal of Environmental Education
  • Journal Number: Vol. 20, No. 2
  • Country: Australia

Promoting efficient energy use in schools that consequently reduces greenhouse gas emissions is the purpose of a residential Energy Efficiency in Schools (EEIS) program reported on in this paper. Research on this program aligns with one of the "key overarching sustainability issues", set out in the Learning for Sustainability: NSW Environmental Education Plan 2002-2005: "Sustaining energy use, cutting greenhouse gases". The EEIS program was sponsored by Queensland EPA, Ergon Energy and Education Queensland. Participants learnt about innovation, leadership, coal mining, greenhouse issues, the "greenhouse challenge", conducting energy audits, alternative energy and promoting energy efficient practices in school and the community. Three EEIS models in Queensland that supported change in energy usage behaviours of participants (school students, parents and staff) is examined. In each of the models, interviews were conducted and questionnaires were completed with participants. In Model 1 it was found that, overall; the EEIS program did develop positive energy efficient behaviours in those who participated. In relation to whole school effects, mixed results were obtained. In Model 1 a rural school initially reduced energy consumption by fifty percent and in Model 2 significant changes in energy efficient behaviours in the school communities occurred. In Model 3 one school followed through an action plan and similar positive effects were observed. The development of an action plan that is implemented in the school, the selection of suitable participants, and post-program visits to schools by relevant staff were among the factors that contributed to the overall success. Each model was found to have achieved their aims to varying degrees but had outcomes that are likely to have both lifetime and possibly intergenerational effects.

Related Items

Sustainability in Small and Medium Sized Enterprises in Regional Australia: A Framework of Analysis

There is a lack of literature on the ecological sustainability issues specific to small and medium...

Fly-in/Fly-out: Implications for Community Sustainability

“Fly-in/fly-out” is a form of work organization that has become the standard model for new mining,...

The political response to rural social and economic sustainability: A cross-national study of Thai and Australian rural policy, 1997-2007

This article provides a cross-national examination of Thai and Australian political responses to...

Share this with your friends

Footer Logo

Contact Us

Level 2, 53 Blackall Street
Barton ACT 2600
AUSTRALIA
Telephone: 02 6260 3733
or email us