Byron Bay High School will soon be generating its own electricity thanks to a $33,000 grant from the federal government for 42 solar panels for the school.
Ruby Kammoora and Lealah Shostak-Herber, pictured, are part of The Green Team environmental group, a voluntary extra-curricular lunchtime collective of nine enthusiastic student members ranging from years 9 to 12 who say they are determined to combat climate change.
Ruby and Lealah recently attended Australian Youth Climate Coalition’s Power Shift conference in Brisbane where they were inspired to lobby for re-powering their school.
‘It’s us, the youth of [the region], showing councils and governments that renewable energy is important to us.’
The Green Team plan is to convert their Performing Arts Centre to carbon neutral by installing the solar panels for energy and creating a water catchment.
‘This will be a totally self-sufficient building with an educational purpose – we’ll have an interactive graph showing the generation of energy versus consumption,’ says team leader Lealah. She is thrilled by the grant, which ‘signifies a strong basis for creating a greener school’. It will also save money from electricity consumption which can be redirected to educational projects.’
The team’s other activities so far have ranged from sponsoring five orang-utans in Indonesia to throwing week-long environmental awareness campaigns within the school community.
Image: More power to you… Ruby Kammoora and Lealah Shostak-Herber whose enthusiasm has garnered a grant for 42 solar panels at Byron Bay High. Photo Jeff ‘High Voltage’ Dawson