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Buxton Primary School Works to Improve Local Biodiversity

22 January 2018

ResourceSmart Schools is a Victorian Government initiative that assists schools to minimise waste, save energy and water, promote biodiversity and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Program results in schools saving money through reduced use of resources while, at the same time, embedding sustainability in their curriculum and school policies. 

Having completed their energy module in 2015, improving biodiversity was the focus for Buxton PS in 2017. Under the guidance of Principal Andrew Bagnall and teacher Lea Hyatt, students and staff have worked together to update their School Environment Management Plan, outlining the actions they will take to make the school more sustainable and reduce their use of water and energy, production of waste and improve their local biodiversity. Staff and students at the small school have been working hard with actions including; participating in the Blue Banded Bee pollinator project, Leadbeaters Possum Awareness Week, participating in community wasp trap making (from recycled materials) and distribution, making and installing next boxes, Great Australian Bird Count, Helmeted Honeyeater Project, participating in Father’s Day tree planting day, looking after their productive gardens, worms and chooks, and improving their Land for Wildlife area.

Having a Land for Wildlife area means the school already has much greater biodiversity than many other schools however, the works they have undertaken on this site have ensured it remains a viable and useful habitat. A storm in 2016 knocked over a number of old habitat trees, so students made nest boxes to replace the hollows. Students are passionate about their bird hide and wetlands, showing them off to any visitor to the school and conducted a bird survey to determine what species call Buxton home.

Since commencing with ResourceSmart in 2014 the school has saved 3,865 tonnes of CO2-e, 172 reams of paper and $1,869.07 by undertaking a broad range of sustainability actions. This is a great achievement for a small school.

For more information on becoming a ResourceSmart school please contact resourcesmart@gvwater.vic.gov.au or visit http://www.sustainability.vic.gov.au/school