Raymond Terrace Early Education Centre

Building a better future for your children

Here at Raymond Terrace Early Education Centre we provide a “home away from home” where children can have fun and learn the importance of
sustainability.
 
We aim to shape the world of tomorrow through the children of today.

Sustainability is incorporated into our curriculum and our way of life. We are committed to educating and inspiring child to take care of the environment.


Saving the planet one tiny step at a time...


We are committed to protecting our environment to ensure a sustainable future for our children and through continuous improvement we strive to be better tomorrow than we are today.
We aim to create a stimulating environment where children have the time, space and resources to investigate, explore and experiment with experiences across all curriculum areas that interest and inspire them.

Why Recycle?

  • Reduce pollution
  • Conserve Landfill
  • Save energy
  • Save resourses
  • Save money
  • Save the planet


We have introduced yellow and red bins into the rooms and throughout the centre...

We are teaching the children the importance of recycling and the correct way to get rid of waste.

Pizza Garden

Water saving is top priority too!

We  like to garden....

We enjoy collected eggs from our  chickens. 

What we've already done... and some of the challenges we've faced

Our going green projected started a few years ago with…


Installing water tanks (2 X 5000 Litre) The water tanks supply bathroom taps, toilets and playground taps costing over $10,000


We get the children to participate in as much as possible like:

Earth Hour, children in the dolphin room participate in earth hour once a month we also have shows come to the centre like the recent Garbage show learning Reduce Reuse & Recycle.


It is important that staff and children all participate, some of our staff have attended seminars and workshops and brought back lots of ideas and plans.
 

Port Stephens council have a great environmental program. We have recently had a visit from an Environment officer. She went through the importance of reducing our waste, recycling and garbage and making compost.

We have also had a Garbage Truck visit – We learnt how the truck empties our bins.


Changed our waste mix

Instead of one big bin for 'regular' waste, we now have recycling bins in each room for paper and cardboard.

Amazingly we have halved our regular waste, and increased our recycling ten-fold. This was achieved by just putting a 'recycling' bin in each room - we're recycling lots of paper from each room - as well as all of our milk containers, tins, bottles etc. 

This has actually saved our centre some money - as recycled waste costs less to collect than regular waste.


Switching to Solar Power

We continue to apply for grants to make this one day an achievable.

We've helped to educate our team and children on how to save electricity by 'switching off' and being a bit more thoughtful about when to use the air-conditioners, and when to just open some

Going paperless, we are in the beginning stages of going paperless with some families opting to receive their invoices and newsletters electronically. Scanning all paper files to the system and recycling paper. Also, we have asked our creditors to invoice us electronically.


We'd love you to contact us if you have any more suggestions.


Using less energy in and around the home isn’t just good for your wallet – it’s great for the environment too. Here are some tips to help you get started.

Heating and cooling tips 
It’s estimated the average Australian home uses 40% of its energy on heating and cooling
  • Unless the mercury hits 30˚C, try and use fans to cool your home instead of the air conditioner.
  • Use inverter type air-conditioners that are sized, installed and used in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations – they’ll use up to 40% less energy than other air-conditioners. Find out more about Energy Rating products.
  • Close your curtains and shut your windows on sunny days to keep the sunlight from heating your home.
  • Install special purpose-built window and door seals to stop the cold / hot air from escaping outside.  
  • Have your gas-ducted heating system zoned, to heat the living areas during the day and bedrooms at night and always close the doors to rooms you’re not using so the heat stays in.
  • Hot air rises – so turn your fan on a lower speed to gently push the warm air back towards you.

Hot water energy saving tips
Hot water uses around 25% of your home’s energy – and is the largest producer of greenhouse gas emissions in the average Australian home
  • Stick to short, four-minute showers. You’ll save water, energy and money.
  • Ditch the heated towel rails – they can cost up to $200 a year in energy.
  • Switch from a standard showerhead to a 3-star rated head. You could reduce your hot water by half.
  • Leave your mixer tap in the cold position, so hot water isn’t wasted cooling in the pipe.

Appliances Around the home
  • If you have a second fridge, only turn it on when it’s needed - that 400L ‘beer’ fridge can cost you around $220 a year
  • Set your fridge’s temperature between 3°C and 5°C, and the freezer to somewhere between -15°C and -18°C. Every degree lower after that uses around 5% more energy.
  • Choose a 4-star model when you’re shopping for a new fridge. It’ll cost you $60 less each year than the average 450-litre fridge with a 2-star rating.
  • Check if your fridge door is sealed properly by placing a strip of paper between the door and the fridge. If the paper can be pulled out easily, it might be time for a reseal.
  • When cooking, set your oven to fan forced - it cooks quicker and more evenly than conventional settings.
  • Consider upgrading to a new dishwasher of your current one was manufactured in the early 90s – chances are its using twice as much water and 40% more energy.
  • An in-ground pool can use as  much as 30% of your home’s electricity bill. Check to see if yours can be connected to an off peak meter tariff – so you can make some great savings. 
  • Use standby power controllers or turn off small appliances like your kettle or toaster when you’re not using them. They mightn’t be big, but they can use 5% of the average home’s energy.
  • Always check the energy-rating label when it’s time to buy a new appliance. The more stars it has, the more energy efficient it is.
  • If it’s time to choose your next appliance, check out CHOICE magazine. They publish advice on a range of tested appliances for energy and water efficiency – and cover everything from price and safety, to performance and warranty.

Laundry tips 
From the washing machine to the iron, cleaning clothes uses a lot of energy and water. Here’s how to cut back.
  • Dry your clothes on a line rather than using your dryer – you can save around $130 a year.
  • When it’s time to buy a new washing machine look for one with:
    • A fast spin cycle - Some of the best machines have spin speeds over 1600 rpm
    • An autosensing control that switches off when your clothes are dry
    • At least a 4-star energy rating and 4-star water rating
    • Or choose a front loader, you’ll use even less water and energy
  • Try and do your ironing in large batches – that way you won’t waste energy heating and reheating your iron every time.

Lighting tips
  • Install motion sensors on your security lights – so you don’t have to remember to turn them off at night,
  • Switch to LEDs or compact fluorescent light bulbs – you could save up to 80% energy per globe.
  • Use solar lights to light up your garden pathways - they store energy during the day and then light up automatically at night. 

References

YourHome 2014, Home entertainment and office equipment, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra. YourHome 2014, Heating and cooling, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra. YourHome 2014, Lighting, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra. Your Home 2014, Appliances, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra Living Greener 2014, Living Greener, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia. Canberra. Your Home 2014, Hot Water, Department of Industry, Commonwealth of Australia, Canberra. Reducing energy and water use 2014, Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal, Government of New South Wales.

The following data was used by Do Something!

to calculate the new national food waste figure of $8 billion:

To better understand community knowledge, attitudes and behaviours about household food waste, 1,200 NSW households were surveyed as part of the ‘Food Waste Avoidance Benchmark Study’.


This NSW Government study was the most comprehensive analysis of community knowledge, attitudes and behaviours yet conducted in Australia about food waste.

As a result of this study, NSW Government stats from ‘Love Food Hate Waste’ estimate that the average NSW household throws out $1,036 of food every year.


Do Something! found that this $1,036 figure was similar to unpublished food waste research from a Government department in another state.


In NSW, food waste also makes up to 38% of the total rubbish in household garbage bins. Garbage bin analysis in other states reveals a similar percentage of food waste in household garbage bins (up to 41%).


Given the national consistency that we found on food waste levels across Australia, we arrived at the $8 billion figure by extrapolation. The $1,036 figure was multiplied by the number of households across Australia. The recently released ABS 2011 Census stats says there were 7,760,320 populated households.


7,760,320 populated households multiplied by $1,036 is $8.04 billion.

 

The following Government data was used to calculate the 4 million tonnes of food waste figure:

The National Waste Report 2010 by the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage, and the Arts estimated that 35% of municipal waste is food (equivalent to 2.675 million tonnes of household food waste).


The National Waste Report also estimates that 21.5% of commercial and industrial waste is food. This is equivalent to 1.388 million tonnes.


Adding these figures together, Australia discards an estimated 4.06 million tonnes of food every year.




47% of the average household bin is organic waste. Most of that waste can break down naturally in household compost bin.




Australia has the largest area of certified organic land in the world. The organic food industry is one of Australia's top five growth industries.




Every year Australian farmers and fishers produce enough food to feed around 60 million people




Australians spend over $371 million on food and beverages each day.