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Aggregate & Quarry Association

Fitzroy School rocks our renewables future

The Rock our Future competition was run by the national Aggregate and Quarry Association (AQA) to mark their 50th anniversary. Schools were invited to have pupils design a quarry which could crush and load ten truckloads of aggregate an hour.

Two groups of boys from Fitzroy School in New Plymouth have taken out the prizes for a national competition to design a quarry which could only run on renewable energy.

The Rock our Future competition was run by the national Aggregate and Quarry Association (AQA) to mark their 50th anniversary. Schools were invited to have pupils design a quarry which could crush and load ten truckloads of aggregate an hour.

Today the year six boys were presented with their prizes by AQA Chief Executive Wayne Scott and New Plymouth MP Jonathan Young.

Wayne Scott says the entries from the Little Eggs Inc group and Storm Industries were the stand outs in the competition.

“They needed to generate 20,000kw hours per day of power to run a quarry. Both proposed using solar, wind and water turbine power.

“The Little Eggs Inc group also researched the use of geothermal and tidal power but discounted these as impractical. Storm Industries proposed connecting the quarry to a gymnasium to recharge batteries off pedal power – which we thought was a good piece of enthusiastic innovation.”

The two groups win $1000 each for their school. Members of each group also received a small cash prize and an earthmoving machinery model. 

Wayne Scott says the Fitzroy School pupils did face some challenges in winning the Rock our Future competition and their success reflected their own determination and the support of their parents and teachers.

“We are looking at the running the Rock our Future competition again next year. We might ask students to turn a disused quarry and environs into a public asset such as we see with the York Road Loop Track on Mt Taranaki, Auckland’s Mt Smart Stadium or the Halswell Quarry Park in Christchurch.”

Fitzroy School teacher Nina Lobb says she knew little about quarrying until she saw details about the Rock our Future project.

“Immediately I thought if I'm interested and want to know more about quarrying, then the students are going to want to know too. We spent the term teaching the students about  fossil fuels and sustainable energies.

“Overall it has been a great learning experience. Building the quarry from Lego proved most enjoyable for one team. You would walk past and hear the loud, excited voices from the boys of possible solutions and decisions being made. They loved it.

“We were so grateful for Vickers Quarry, who shut-down work for the day to host our visit with 90 students and educate them on how their operation works. The time spent with them was invaluable. A big thank you also to parent Mark Ford who gave up his time to work with the students each week,” says Nina Lobb.

Little Eggs Inc members; Campbell Donovan, Izak Cleaver, Benji Cantlon, Zayne Hawkins and Zade Boobyer

Storm Industries members; Cooper Myers, Emmett Ford, Ben Jackson, Geordie Whiting and Reuben Mathias

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About quarrying in New Zealand

Using Aggregate

Aggregates are the most consumed bulk product in the world after water. New Zealand uses 9-10 tonnes of aggregate every year for each adult and child.

Building NZ

To build an average house, you need about 250 tonnes of aggregate - for use in concrete, asphalt, mortar and building products.

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The quarry industry is committed to working alongside local communities and follows stringent planning, environmental and operating conditions.