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Y Green + I Green

2008  – 2012

Developing a residential sustainability project where young people are trained and subsequently employed to conduct home sustainability consultations in their local community.

Inspired by the Californian Youth Energy Services project, the Y Green project aims to engage a range of key stakeholders to develop a residential sustainability project where young people are trained and subsequently employed to conduct home sustainability consultations in their local community. The consultations involve providing advice and information on household energy efficiency and products available to reduce energy usage.

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With one fifth of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions coming from households, this project focuses on behaviour change in energy and water use in households

The young people involved in the project will participate in a nationally accredited Course in Home Sustainability Assessment delivered by the Western Sydney Institute of TAFE. This course includes not only the technical information needed to complete a residentially sustainability consultation, but also includes customer service skills, first aid and occupational health and safety.

The aims of the project include providing skill development for young people in an emerging ’green’ employment area, improving energy and water efficiency in residential households, increasing awareness of all participants of the need for, and ways to improve energy and water efficiency and encouraging local youth into further education and training.

Key Features

  • Engagement of youth aged between 15 and 25 years old
  • Accredited training for unskilled youth
  • Paid employment for Home Sustainability Advisors
  • Home sustainability consultations conducted in a local neighbourhood
  • Monitoring performance/change (residential consumption) over time
  • Collaboration/partnership in management and implementation of the project
  • Local government involvement and support

Y Green in the Baulkham Hills Shire

Excerpt from Mayor’s Speech

These teams of young people can now go out and conduct personalised home consultations, and teach local residents how to conserve and save on their energy usage. These changes are important – we sometimes think that as residents we can’t make a difference, but one-fifth of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions come from households and there are 7 million households in Australia each producing more than 15 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every year.

The Dusseldorp tradition for innovation carries further than simply providing young people with the educational knowledge to do this work. The Y Green project is a real collaboration – six organisations all working together to provide skill development and employment opportunity in the new Green Skills area AND save energy in the residential sector.

This project has been initiated by Dusseldorp Skills Forum and Council is very proud to be involved, together with Steplight, the Western Sydney Institute, the University of Western Sydney and The New Rouse Hill. So you are the pioneers, the trail blazers. I hope you don’t look at the work you are going out to do, in the evenings and the weekends as simply casual employment. Be inspired by the man who founded Lend Lease, a $7 billion company with 11,500 employees here and around the world, including Europe and the Middle East.

I look forward to hearing great stories about their successes, and about how our residents have embraced this project and invited them into their homes. I look forward to reading the evaluation of the project being undertaken by UWS – to learn of the Green House Gas savings being made here in our shire and importantly, I look forward to the growth of this project. I publicly call on our counterparts in other Councils in Western Sydney to follow our lead – to not only take up the challenge to help our residents reduce their Green House Gas emissions but to give our youth the opportunity to be part of this – to gain skills in this emerging industry and lead the way forward.

Y Green Review

An evaluation/review of the the Y Green pilot in the Rouse Hill area of NSW. It includes the findings from the UWS Research Team as well as the report from Steplight’s household assessments and reviews.

icon Y Green Review (448.72 kB)

Potential Benefits From Project Expansion

A report from Monash Sustainability Institute.

5 scenarios based on engagement from local government and schools on a modest national scale. The report highlights significant benefits in terms of:

  • Greenhouse gas savings (potential to save the equivalent of removing 100000 cars from our roads)
  • “Green Skills” for young people
  • Community building.

icon The igreen and Y Green projects – Potential benefits from project expansion

I Green

igreen is a secondary school program which assists households in becoming more sustainable and creates opportunities for the development of green skills in young people.

The program has been developed by the Dusseldorp Skills Forum and Steplight Pty Ltd. It involves students completing an accredited training program and then going on to complete a number of home sustainability assessments in their local community. The assessments involve providing advice and information on household energy and water efficiency.

green is a secondary school program which assists households in becoming more sustainable and creates opportunities for the development of green skills in young people. The program has been developed by the Dusseldorp Skills Forum and Steplight Pty Ltd. It involves students completing a training program and then going on to complete a number of home sustainability assessments in their local community. The assessments involve providing advice and information on household energy and water efficiency.

Background

One-fifth of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions come from households. There are 7 million households in Australia each producing more than 15 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every year (one tonne of emissions would fill a family home).  With growing awareness of climate change and the need to live more sustainable lives, many Australians would like to be doing ‘their bit’ around the home.  While changing light bulbs and fitting low-flow showerheads are solutions that have been well communicated and readily implemented – making Australian homes energy and water smart requires a lot more!

The household residential sector can make a considerable contribution to reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions. This will involve a combination of retrofitting, introduction of new technologies and behaviour change by Australian families. To do this successfully, households need to be provided with reliable, professionally-based information and monitoring. igreen develops the human capital and innovation needed to assist Australian households.

The igreen program is a residential sustainability project that is delivered and managed through secondary schools. A group of students (Year 9, 10 or 11) are trained to conduct home sustainability assessments in their school community.

Benefits for the school

There are a range of benefits for the school and its community:

  • Demonstrates the school’s commitment to environmental action
  • A structured program with support material developed
  • Innovative teaching/learning opportunity
  • Hands on learning experience for students
  • Provides information to report on in the School Environmental Management Plan
  • Engages students in the climate change debate
  • Work related skills – useful for students’ resumes
  • Teaches communication skills
  • National accreditation can be part of student’s formal study pattern or extra curricula activity
  • Establishes the school as a leader in action for climate change
  • Extra qualifications for staff
  • Opportunities for students to utilise their green skills for future employment with local government, energy retailers or others.

Visit the igreen Website