Blog Tag: Sustainability

Nature Works HK

Posted by Peter MUIR

natureworksNature Works HK (NWHK) is a program developed by The Nature Conservancy and Seeds Training that is designed to give students the skills, networks, and opportunities necessary to translate their passion for the environment into tangible action in their schools and communities.  The programme runs from October 2014 to April 2015, kicking off with 3-day skills experiential training camp designed to build skills necessary for success in real-world projects, including communication, collaboration, and goal-setting.

Students who join this programme will leave armed with crucial new skills difficult to learn in the classroom but invaluable in university and in the working world.  Click here for a brochure on the programme or click here to visit the project website.  This opportunity is only open to students in Years 9 and above, and there are only 10 places available to DC students.  Email Mr Muir if you are keen to join.

International Mother Earth Day

Posted by Peter MUIR

EarthdayOur planet is at a turning point. The massive global migration underway now from countryside to cities will demand huge investments in energy, water, materials, waste, food distribution, and transportation over the next 25 years. If the right investments are made now, this unique opportunity will be the catalyst for dramatic changes in the built environment and the fight against carbon emissions and climate change.

Held on April 22 since 1970, and what is referred to by the UN as International Mother Earth Day, this day aims at improving the way we treat our home.  So far more than one billion acts of green have been pledged on the Earth Day website – sign up yours today to help reach the target of two billion acts of green.

An idea – Start Composting…
More than a billion pounds of food are thrown away every year. Help make a difference by turning your food waste into soil. Start composting today!
Refuse Junk mail…
Junk mail is not only a major inconvenience, it also has an extremely negative impact on the environment. Take action to help reduce the amount of junk mail you receive.

Earth hour

Posted by Peter MUIR

Earthhour 2014What started as a city-wide initiative in Sydney in 2006, Earth Hour has become one of the largest environmental activities in terms of participant numbers.  Perhaps because it is so simple – just turn off your lights and appliances for one hour.  However the movement has much more too it – and so should your actions!

So, in addition to switching off the lights for an hour from 8.30pm on Saturday 29th March 2014, show your continued commitment to the planet by extending your actions and consistently conserve your energy use. Also see what you can do to encourage others to do the same – to start developing your Earth Hour ideas, go to

Though encouraged, switching off your lights and appliances alone does not constitute a C&S (or CAS) activity.

Earth Hour 2014

Posted by Peter MUIR

Earthhour 2014

Earth Hour is an hour from 8.30pm on March 29th when people from all over the planet think about and take action to celebrate this amazing planet that is (currently) the only place we can call home.

What started off as a simple action  – calling on people to switch off lights for this hour – has turned into one of the worlds largest movements by participation, with millions of people from over 150 countries getting involved.

Why not get some friends together and take action by planning, and then implementing, an event in DC, or go one step further and get residents of DB involved!   There will soon be resources added to the event website, as well as details about how Earth Hour will be celebrated across Hong Kong.

Eco-Leaders needed!

Posted by admin

Ecoschools logoDC wishes to implement the Eco-Schools programme, and we are looking for “green” Year 12 students to lead this group. Eco-Schools is an international programme that aims to empower students to be the change our sustainable world needs and engaging them in fun, action-orientated learning.  We wish to create a committee with representatives from various year levels, as well as other members of the school community, who will implement a seven-step change to make our school more environmentally friendly. Getting involved in this committee will provide a great opportunity for a small number of students to develop leadership skills while driving a meaningful eco-project. If you are in Year 12 and think you have what it takes to lead this committee, email DC science teacher Mr Burrage on
If you are not in year 12 but are keen to join – we will soon be asking you to sign up to get involved!

Nature Works leadership programme

Posted by admin

Nature ConservancyThe ESF Secondary Schools, in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and The Edge Learning Center and Seeds Training, is delighted to offer students with an interest in conservation issues an opportunity to take part in the Nature Works Hong Kong program.   The goal of the program is to equip motivated students with the skills, mindset and opportunity necessary for them to turn their passion for the environment into tangible action.

The program begins with a two-day camp in Hong Kong on the 15th and 16th of October.  This camp introduces students to the three conservation themes of the program – Air, Water and Food – and engages students in a range of activities designed to develop their skills in leadership, communication, collaboration, goal-setting, and more.   Student teams then have one month to develop an action plan around conservation in their own schools. They’ll have access to experts across a range of professions and fields to help them craft their plan and build a presentation of these plans for TNC’s Asia Pacific Council, a group of business and conservation leaders from across the region.   With seed funding from the Council, student teams then have 4 months to turn their plans into reality, culminating in a final presentation of their work to the ESF community in March 2014.

The application process is open to all students from Year 10-13 at ESF Secondary Schools.   Students who are interested in exploring careers in environmental conservation, or those who are just passionate about the environment, are encouraged to apply.  Applications are due Wednesday, 25 September with successful applicants being notified Friday, 27 September.

For more information, please download and read Nature Works Hong Kong

If you are eligible and interested to apply, here is the application form Nature Works Hong Kong Application Form

Want to be an Environmental Leader in the ESF forum?

Posted by admin

RCHK Year 13 student Kevin Cheung, the Chair of the ESF Student Environment Forum, is looking for two students to represent DC in the ESF student environmental forum.   This is a fantastic opportunity for students to get involved in directing ESF schools to becoming more environmentally friendly, and would provide those involved with great experience in this inter-school initiative.

Those chosen to represent DC will be expected to be active participants at once per term meetings to achieve the committee’s goals and facilitate ESF-wide strategy.

We would like to have one student from our middle school and one senior school student to represent DC.  Naturally, those who apply would need to be enthusiastic about environmental sustainability.  Keen to get involved?  Complete this application form before Friday September 6th.

World Food Day – volunteers wanted

Posted by admin

World Food Day logoDid you know that about a third of all food produced globally is wasted?  Here in Hong Kong, according to Friends of the Earth (HK), we produce over 3,000 tonnes of food waste every year!  Then of course there are the food issues of famine and ensuring that we produce enough food for an ever-increasing world population.

World Food Day (16th of October every year) is a day declared by the UN General Assembly to aim to heighten public awareness of world food problems and strengthen solidarity in the struggle against hunger, malnutrition and poverty.  We will be holding events / activities here at DC to celebrate this day as a part of our Community Engagement.  We are asking for Year 9 students to form an committee that will orgniase our involvement.   Keen to get involved?  Then click here and sign up today as there is a limit on how many people can join this committee.   And yes – this would be a C&S Project.

Ark Eden CAS Project

Posted by Peter MUIR

Ark Eden will be hosting a hands-on CAS opportunity at their venue in Mui Wo during September-October.  In this activity students will work on a range of developments to create a Permaculture Education Demonstration Site at Ark Eden. Permaculture is an approach to designing human settlements and agricultural systems that are modeled on the relationships found in natural ecologies.

Students will work alongside experts from several different fields including permaculturalists, ecologists, eco-designers and horticulturalists. They will become versed in sustainable principles and learn many hands-on skills that cannot be learned from books.

Students would need to commit to a number of Saturday’s in order for this to be considered a CAS Project (for years 12-13).  Students, including MYP students, may also join on a daily basis (though registration is still required).   Costs, dates and registration details can be found on this registration form – Ark Eden CAS Activity 2013

Burn Calories, Not Electricity

Posted by Peter MUIR

take the stairsStairs or elevator – which would you choose? And what are the consequences of your choice?

The amount of energy an elevator for every floor it moves you is quite high, and not often thought about. A 15 second elevator journey uses up the same amount of energy as a 60 W light bulb does within an hour. How much energy could you save with every floor you walk instead?

Though there are cases when elevators need to be used (for the elderly, moving goods, the disabled and buildings with a large number of floors), it has been observed here at DC that elevators are often used when stairs could be an option. “We are hoping that this campaign reduces the use of elevator use at DC when the stairs could be used” said Year 11 student Michelle Tamura, who is driving the campaign Burn calories, not electricity.

Aside from reasons relating to sustainable use of resources, Michelle added that there are also health benefits for taking stairs rather an elevator. “Using the stairs is a great way to develop fitness, and use energy. Why go to the gym to use the stair machine, when you have stairs at school!”

So next time you are going up or down floors, make sure that you, if you can, burn calories, not electricity.