Sustainability in early childhood education is an important part of keeping a natural and clean environment and should be incorporated into each and every service setting.
There are 5 different sustainability checklists altogether which covers a key environmental area. The following checklists are available to download:
1) "Sustainability Checklist - Air" includes services checking ventilation such as fans and air vents, areas of moisture are repaired, the environment dust free and the use of public transport is encouraged.
2) "Sustainability Checklist - Waste" provides checks to ensure that the centre is minimising their waste consumption. This includes buying shopping in bulk, the use of recycling materials throughout the centre as well as reducing water in the kitchen area.
3) "Sustainability Checklist - Water" helps centres to identify and explore ways of minimising water consumption. Saving water throughout the centre includes making sure that taps are not dripping, toilets are not constantly run, rainwater is collected etc.
4) "Sustainability Checklist - Chemicals" identifies if the centre is reducing and storing hazardous chemicals within the service. This includes products used that does not contain harmful chemicals, recycled materials are non toxic, foods with additives and food colouring is avoided and so on.
5) "Sustainability Checklist - Energy" enables centres to determine if they practice energy saving. Checking if lights and appliances are switched off when not in use, using natural lighting where possible, A/C's and heaters are working efficiently are all part of saving energy.
These checklists are intended for services to become aware of their performance and work practices within key environmental areas. It enables the centre to plan and implement changes in order to develop good environmental practices throughout the centre.