Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative - ACT
The waste component of the AuSSI focuses on the minimisation of waste to landfill through recycling of paper, rigid plastics, steel, aluminium and glass products, the composting of organic material and smart purchasing.
The goal of the waste component is to change the culture and attitudes of the school community from viewing what we would traditionally throw away as ‘waste’ to recognising these materials as ‘resources.’
Did you know that up to 85% of the waste a school produces can be recycled or reused? AuSSI ACT engaged a contractor to conduct week-long comprehensive waste audits in seven primary and secondary schools in the ACT. It was found that the vast majority (85%) of waste generated in a school can potentially be recycled or reused. Posters showing the percentage of different waste types in a typical ACT school can be found here:
Waste Best Practice Guide
When addressing waste, schools receive a Waste and Recycling Best Practice Guide. This guide provides step-by-step instructions and recommendations to help schools reduce, reuse and recycle their waste and develop a Waste and Recycling Action Plan.
In addition to the Waste and Recycling Best Practice Guide, AuSSI ACT offers:
AuSSI ACT has Waste Curriculum Units (P-Y10) to support ‘Every Chance to Learn’, the ACT Curriculum Framework. The units address the Essential Learning Achievements and provide a diverse range of activities and assessment tasks relevant to the ACT. The units complement the Australian Curriculum Sustainability Priority.
ACT Waste Resources and Services
Schools can also take advantage of other resources and services available in the ACT including tours of the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) at Hume and the ACTSmart Public Event Recycling Program:
To help your school label bins, the following bin stickers are available from AuSSI ACT:
Fill in the order form and return it to AuSSI ACT and the stickers will be sent to your school.
Recent waste audits in schools have shown that up to 48% of waste generated in schools is organic. Several options are available for your school to manage your organic/compostable waste. These options include composting, worm farming, chickens, separate collections from an organic waste contractor or a combination of these options.
Having chickens in your school is one way to manage your organic waste. There are many benefits for having chickens in your school including:
For more information on keeping chickens or for other options for managing organic waste, contact a Sustainable Schools Officer.
Keep Australia Beautiful - helping to reduce litter and promote sustainable communities
National Recycling Week - lesson plans, activity suggestions and information on recycling
Nude Food Day - information on how to host a 'nude food' day
Cool Australia - fact sheets, research and news articles on waste and recycling
ACT Government Territory and Municipal Services - information on what can be recycled in the ACT