I raise a matter for the Minister for Education in the other place. Shortly I will have the pleasure of presenting the Portland Special School with an award for completing the Brumby government’s rubbish-free Friday initiative. It is great to see that our local schools are winning the battle to eliminate lunchtime rubbish and food scraps from their grounds. Schools participating in the challenge weighed their lunch rubbish in July as a reference point and then compared it with the volume accumulated on Rubbish-Free Lunch Challenge Day in August. This sends a message that young people can get out there and educate the rest of the community about being environmentally conscious.
Initiatives like this help all children and teenagers understand and appreciate the environment and the effects that they have upon it.
The rubbish-free lunch program shows school students that the way they live has an impact on the environment and that we must think about issues such as climate change and renewable energy and not simply bury our heads in the sand and hope they will all go away, as the Howard government does.
The Portland Special School students had a fantastic time participating in this program as well as learning along the way, and I am certain all other schools participating did the same. I ask the minister to provide written advice to me of plans for any further initiatives such as the rubbish-free Friday program in schools that help children learn about impacts upon the environment and how the future of Australia can be environmentally friendly.