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“Stories of Change”: School Energy Detectives in action at a Hotel. Innovation Project of Thea Holm, ESD LT (1)

Left: Thea Holm teaching chef Werner Blignaut of Centurion Lake Hotel, how to cook with the sun.
Right: Hartbeespoort Secondary School Gr8’s Energy Detective Team, ready for action!

On 22 November 2012, our long awaited Energy Action Day finally became reality! The wonderful and very professional staff of the 4 star Centurion Lake Hotel in Centurion, Gauteng, under the management of Andrew van Hasselt, gave us a warm and friendly welcome on arrival.

Some of the Energy Detective Team arriving in the foyer of Centurion Lake Hotel.

Our 22 Energy Detectives from Hartbeespoort High School curiously gathered around the solar cookers that were set up for praparing them their afternoon meal of bread roll sausages with a tomato and onion relish. Some of the children anxiously holding their clip boards tight to their bodies, waiting for the instructions to go and observe.


The Energy Detectives were divided into 5 teams with questions set up in the following categories: Water, Electricity (Appliances), Electricity (lights), Waste and Travel. Some of these groups only had questionaires for the facility manager of the hotel, others had to do practical measurements of water flow and some had to have a closer look at appliances in use and their electricity consumption.

Left: The “Travel” Energy Detectives asking questions to Ben Pretorius, security manager at the hotel, with Thea and Andrew van Hasselt standing by, also listening. Right: The “Waste” Energy Detectives with their questions to the facility manager, Neil Annetts.  Ben Pretorius standing by.

After finishing with their tasks for the morning, everyone just relaxed outside, hungry and waiting for the food to be served!

Left: Energy detectives at the hotel. Right: Head chef of Centurion Lake Hotel, Werner Blignaut.




Beginning 2013, Hartbeespoort Secondary School will join WESSA’s Eco school programme.

Thea HolmCompiled by Thea Holm. A WESSA Share-Net resource, funded through the USAID ‘Stepping up to Sustainability’ project. WESSA Share-Net. People, places and publications for environmental education, PO Box 394, Howick, 3290. Tel (033) 330 3931 ext 124,
e-mail sharenet@wessa.co.za; website www.wessa.org.za