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Environmental issues made fun for Auckland kids

4 June 2004

Auckland City has launched its state of the environment update this week, aiming messages particularly at school children and using the idea that ‘only rain should go down the drain’.

The 2003 update is a colourful insight into the city’s environmental health. It encourages children to play their part by way of a snakes-and-ladders-style game focussing on stormwater.

The information is available to anyone on request but has been specifically targeted at primary and intermediate school children to promote good habits while allowing them to have fun and learn about their city. Students can use the printed update in conjunction with Auckland City’s website (www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/environment) to learn about factors affecting Auckland’s environment. These include: energy efficiency and climate change waste heritage noise air quality hazardous substances and contaminated land urban growth transport.

The resource provides tips on how people can make a difference in each area and the game focuses specifically on stormwater, taking children on a trip from their home to the sea with highlighted key issues on the way.

Councillor Juliet Yates, chairperson of Auckland City’s City Development Committee, believes educating children about environmental issues is vital and can have a wide-ranging affect on the community. “Children are our future and, while that is a widely used phrase, it is also very important to remember. If we educate them now they carry that knowledge with them through their lives. They can also take the messages home to parents or caregivers and often adults make changes in the home because of what they have learnt from their children,” says Mrs Yates.

“Our hope is that the game will be a fun way for children to learn what they can do in their own lives to ensure Auckland has a sustainable future.”

The council is legally required to provide information about the city’s environmental status and does this by producing a comprehensive report once every three years with updates in the interim years. The next full report will be published in 2005.

For more information on the 2003 state of the environment update or to request a copy of the resource, phone (09) 379 2020 or visit www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/environment.


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