Sustainable Gazebos and Filters for Good!

Hi everyone! My name is Charlee Fox and I am a sophomore loving my Environmental Sustainability major at Shepherd University. I could not enjoy my environmental classes any more than I do, and I do believe we have the coolest, most helpful professors! I am currently in Sustainable Development and lab this semester and have previously taken Dimensions of Environmental Science 201 and 202. This week is advising week and I am excited to have three sciences next semester. I wanted to talk about two really exciting things I am involved in this year involving environmental science!The first thing is my Sustainable Development class’s involvement in the EPA’s P3 grant! You can view more about what the grant is about here . P3 stands for people, prosperity, and the planet. We are currently working on drafting a proposal to send in. We are aiming to build a sustainable gazebo! If we get the first stage of the grant, we will receive $15,000 to build a “prototype” so to say. This gazebo will include solar panels, vents, storm water catchment, and filtration systems! As for the second part of the grant, if we win the competition at the National Sustainable Design Expo in Washington DC, we will receive an amazing $90,000 to promote and sell our gazebos around the world! We are just starting this grant process so you will have to wait till my next blog to see what we have accomplished!

The second thing going on in my environmental life is my Brita Water Filter for Good ambassadorship. Being an ambassador for Brita has been so fun this year! I received 7 boxes in the mail from them (which I stacked in my living room, haha) full of water bottles and large filters to pass out to Shepherd Students.

Currently I am passing them out to different majors and sporting teams and am loving seeing my bright green bottles around campus! I have learned so much such as the following:

Did you know?

  • In spite of having easy access to clean water, the United States is the world’s largest bottled water consumer.1 In 2008, the U.S. used enough plastic water bottles to stretch around the Earth more than 190 times. (Brita)
  • Many people intend to recycle disposable water bottles; however, 69% of bottled water containers end up in the trash and not in a recycling container. (Brita)
  • Many people think bottled water is cleaner than tap water … BUT:  In the U.S., public water is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which requires multiple daily tests for bacteria and makes results available to the public. The Food and Drug Administration, which regulates bottled water, only requires weekly testing and does not share its findings with the EPA or the public. (Brita)

I truly love the environment and am out to protect it as much as I can! I am learning so much here at Shepherd and am exposed to so many great things. Keep checking the blog to see my Sustainable Development class’s progress with our grant, and to see what I am doing next with Brita! Have a wonderful day!


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