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Conversation Map of Youth Sustainability Analysis
Detailed Youth Sustainability Analysis
By Kathryn Brooks
Four schools, compromising of Year 5 and 6 students were involved with the ideas generation of Ed Fest with the theme ‘From Little Things, Big Things Grow’ on Friday 19th of September 2008. Martin Gully, the Armidale School, Newlinging and Sandon were the primary schools that contributed their big ideas to the Youth Stream. The theme and aim of these workshops was not merely to get brainstorming, but to generate a sense of ownership and positive ways the students could positively contribute towards sustainability.
What are the positive aspects of Sustainability?
• Recycling- by reusing items besides being sustainable it is a cheaper option than purchasing new. Recycling can make something new, a present for instance.
• Turn off electrical, entertain yourself and play outside
• Care to the community
• Education programs advising people of what sustainability is and how to put sustainable practices in place
• Help the environment, earth, animals, plants and stops pollution
• Leading by setting an example to other regions and rest of the world
• Planting trees- this generates a habitat for animals, decreases carbon, creates oxygen
• Being aware of water sustainability, using water tanks.
• Transport issues
• New technologies
• New ideas, awareness for the future generations, we owe those generations a responsibility to act responsible now.
• Save electricity- generate your own somehow and save money
What are the Negatives?
• High use of paper, uses a lot of trees
• Costs of developing new technologies
• We still need to use electricity
• Some think you have to give up your comforts
• Changing the way you think and how others think about the issue of sustainability
• Difficult to convince people to change their habits
• Legal restrictions against sustainability, rather than promoting and assisting in the development of sustainable projects
• Difficulties in creating a balance between trying to act in sustainable ways and still not having to give up everything
• What works for one doesn’t necessarily work for another, this is meant in several ways. Mainly this theory meant what sustainable practices and issues in one area may not be the same for another region. Eg, water issues are not as high a priority in Armidale as they are in Tamworth, hence the solutions to this issue must be different. Further, the sustainability solutions may not be effective, and need to be altered accordingly, like using bike riding or walking more, is realistic for people who live in town, compared to those who live outside of town.
What can be done?
• Reusing- donating unwanted toys and clothes to charity
• Involvement of schools, by using these measures turn off lights, fans and computers; composite and worm farms; water tanks; paper recycling and using reusable containers for lunches. (the students used these examples from practices currently employed)
• Replacing industries and factories that cause a lot of pollution in producing electricity, with renewable energy or clean factories
• Limiting showers
• Education and expo’s, where the message must be conveyed clearly and correctly to the wider publicly at all levels.
• Transport- use less cars, public transport, use smaller cars, more bikes, and increase walking to places.
• Increased use of biodiesels
• Government rebates and incentives which should be aimed at recycling, planting trees, and implementation and economic access to renewable energy sources of electricity.
• Government and community action- letter writing and community campaigning to parliamentarians. Also the unity of a community can bring about change using their collective employment of methods which may draw government attention that the issue is valued and to do something about it.
• Sustainable farming
• Eat more non-artificial foods
• Grow your own produce
• Enhance and develop renewable energy- Solar, wind and hydro power
• Solar cars
• Simple changes like putting more clothes on instead of increasing the temperate of the heating
• Being aware of electricity use, this can be cut down by switching off lights, limit use of television and computers, turning off electrical goods when not in use and turning off and removing plugs from the power points (if not in use).
• Use of power saving light bulbs
• Energy efficiency electric goods, to let consumers be educated about the consumption of electricity and allow for choices when buying products
• Building sustainable houses, with awareness of the colours used (can generate and retain heat in rooms), skylights rather than electricity, solar panels and water tanks
• Cut down on packaging, this causes more pollution, waste and harm to the environment (also directly to animals)