Environmental Sustainability

Environmental Policy

As part of the international Eco-Schools movement and in conjunction with the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals (2015), we aim to play a pro-active and participatory role within the Eastern Cape and South Africa in respect of environmental issues through reducing our negative impacts and increasing reformative actions towards sustainability.  We at St Andrew’s College will actively pursue a policy of environmental best practice in order to assist in creating an environmentally sustainable future. In taking this course of action it is acknowledged that environmental best practice is context-based and will cover biological/ biophysical, sociological and economic factors required for a ‘green’ sustainable school.

In order to meet our environmental responsibilities, we at St Andrew’s College will aim to:

  1. Promote environmental best practice in keeping with the Christian principle of stewardship of the earth.
  2. Foster a culture of knowledge, respect and care for the environment.
  3. Promote study of the environment across the curriculum.
  4. Minimise energy, water, fossil fuel and other resource use.
  5. Minimise production of, and effectively manage, waste.
  6. Implement an environmentally responsible purchase and supplies policy.
  7. Incorporate environmental practices in landscaping, physical planning, construction and development.
  8. Acquire and maintain an Eco-School status.
  9. Participate in dealing with with local environmental issues in collaboration with the broader Grahamstown community and beyond.
  10. Encourage all stakeholders of the Andrean family to commit to implementing the policy.

 ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION PLAN

In order to meet our environmental responsibilities, we aim to:

  1. Promote environmental best practice in keeping with the Christian principle of stewardship of the earth by
  • Ensuring environmental issues are integral to the Christian teachings of the school.
  • This may take place through the vehicle of the Chapel service.
  1. Foster a culture of knowledge, respect and care for the environment by
  • Raising environmental awareness amongst all members of the school,
  • Seeking opportunities to change practices of staff and learners to impact positively on the environment,
  • Developing deeper knowledge and understanding of our physical and social environments.
  1. Promote study of the environment across the curriculum by
  • Fostering awareness amongst teaching staff on environmental content of courses.
  • Utilising the campus and local opportunities and communities for environmental learning.
  • Ensuring projects carried out at St. Andrew’s College are ethically and environmentally sound.
  • Involving learners in developing creative and environmentally related projects.
  • Involving learners in internal audits/ Inter-house monitoring competitions to determine baseline patterns of resource use, monitor compliance and improve environmental practices.
  • Eventually incorporating Eco-Schools activities into the curriculum.
  • Report annually on how learners have been involved in implementing policy.
  1. Minimise energy, water, fossil fuel and other resource use by
  • Conducting audits on, monitoring and minimising use of energy, water and fossil fuel consumption:

 

Water

  1. Scholars to be educated on sensible use of water in daily lives (shower duration, closing taps etc)
  2. Use water meters in selected areas for monitoring use and developing water saving practices
  3. Taps regularly maintained and leaking taps to be reported and repaired promptly
  4. Water saving devices (low-flow shower heads, minimal toilet water flush) to be utilised wherever possible in existing and new physical developments
  5. Water tanks installed to collect water from roofs, to be used to maintain gardens, fields and swimming pool
  6. Establish a system of grey water collection and use.
  7. Water at sensible times
  8. Plant endemic indigenous plants wherever possible to save water

Electricity

  1. Scholars to be educated on sensible use of electricity in daily lives (turning off lights etc)
  2. Use electricity meters in selected areas for monitoring use and developing electricity saving practices
  3. Energy saving devices and alternative energy sources (, low energy light bulbs, insulation, solar water heating etc) be utilised wherever possible in existing and new physical developments
  4. Heaters and Air conditioners to be limited and those allowed thoroughly motivated for.

Fossil fuels

  1. Unnecessary travel avoided (e.g. carpool)
  2. Reduce the impact of necessary travel through mitigation (e.g. a tree planting programme in collaboration with local community)

Plants, animals and soil

  1. Avoid deterioration of soil (e.g. loss of top soil through erosion)
  2. Remove alien invasive species immediately and new plants to be indigenous wherever possible
  3. Increase biodiversity on campus (e.g. Establish bird feeding and bath sites)
  1. Minimise production of, and effectively manage, waste by
  • Conducting a waste audit to assess waste production,
  • Establishing a monitoring programme on waste management,
  • Minimising waste production through reducing consumption, re-using and recycling:
    1. Unusable organic matter from kitchens to be composted and used on-site.
    2. Uneaten prepared food to be reused or donated.
    3. Organic matter from gardens to be composted and used on-site
    4. Recyclable material (processed – cleaned, flattened etc) to be separated from non-recyclable and placed in an orange refuse bag for collection by municipality (in collaboration with the Masihlule\iWARS project)
    5. Non-recyclable material placed in black bags for collection my municipality
    6. Other wastes (oil, metals, workshop waste etc) to be disposed of appropriately
  1. Implement an environmentally responsible purchasing and supplies policy by
  • Conducting business, wherever possible, with companies that adhere to sound environmental practices.
  • Using local suppliers in favour of remote suppliers wherever possible.
  1. Incorporate environmental best practice in landscaping, physical planning, construction and development by
  • Conducting appropriate scoping-level and/or environmental impact assessments prior to construction or development.
  • Identifying and using new technologies wherever possible to ensure environmental best practice.
  1. Obtain and maintain our Eco-School status by
  • Providing support for teachers and learners involved in such activities.
  • Ensuring that reports are submitted in time for consideration of Eco-school status.

 

  1. Participate in addressing local environmental issues in partnership with the broader community by
  • Liaising, collaborating and attending meetings with other interested parties such as municipality, schools, Resident’s associations and NGO’s.
  1. Encourage all stakeholders of the Andrean family to commit to implementing the policy by
  • Developing environmental management and action plans that allow for involvement of all stakeholders.
  • Reporting regularly to stakeholders on environmental activities and achievements.
  • Publicising environmental achievements in an appropriate manner
  • Establishing a Green Fund to cover costs of implementing environmentally related projects