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Live Green News - Spring 2019

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Photo: Kaspar Delhey Roxburgh Rise students statewide energy champions Roxburgh Rise Primary School students can now claim the title of Energy Champions. They earned the title at the Statewide ResourceSmart Schools Awards held recently at the Melbourne Cricket Ground hosted by Craig Reucassel from the ABC's War on Waste. Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D'Ambrosio recognised students for their efforts to inspire sustainable actions in their communities, reduce their environmental impact and protect the environment. Roxburgh Rise Primary School won the Energy Champions category for both the Northern Region and the whole of Victoria - for the least amount of energy consumed per student, achieving the greatest savings on utility bills. Participating schools were asked to collate and submit their energy bills for 2017 and 2018 and tried to reduce their energy use as much as possible. The school was awarded a plaque as well as $5000 to use on other sustainability projects around the school. So what is the secret to Roxburgh Rise Primary School's energy saving success? The school now has an operational solar panel system, replaced its old fluorescent lighting with LED lights, ceiling fans, curtains, and motion sensors that switch lights off when no one is in the room. They have thermometers in each room and they aim to keep temperatures between 18-20 degrees celsius in winter and 23-26 degrees celsius in summer. They use the ResourceSmart Schools website to help track the amount of energy they use. They even have classroom monitors who tick off a checklist to make sure appliances have been switched off when students leave the classroom. Teachers and students have made the effort to reduce electricity and gas use by turning lights, heaters and air conditioners off when not in rooms. "We are very proud of this award and the fact that we are doing our bit to reduce energy at our school for our environment." The free ResourceSmart Schools program is open to all schools to participate. Since 2008 participating schools have collectively saved $21 million and avoided creating more than 60,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases. For more information on how you can help your local school become a ResourceSmart School, contact Jane Burns at CERES on 9389 0100. 2 LIVE GREEN Hume City Council New penalties for toxic waste dumpers The State Government is introducing new legislation that will impose fines of up to $290,000 for individuals and $3.2 million for businesses for violating hazardous goods regulations. Businesses engaging in reckless conduct that places a person in danger of death could also be fined up to $6.4 million under the new laws. The legislation would not be retrospective but is expected to be a strong deterrent to rogue operators across Victoria. The new laws have been welcomed by local campaign groups and by the Fire Fighters Union, whose members experienced nose bleeds, respiratory problems and other health issues after fighting the August 2018 fire in Tottenham and the April 2019 fire in Campbellfield. Source: The Age, 14 June 2019. Photo: Star Weekly. Gardens for Wildlife Hume City Council is starting a new program, Gardens for Wildlife (G4W), where volunteer community guides will visit residents and offer advice on making their gardens more wildlife friendly. Contact Urban Biodiversity Officer Melissa Doherty on 9205 2466 for details or visit

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