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Wando Warriors changing the world one tree at a time

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Michelle Powellís fall semester environmental science class had a mission.

And with a little determination and hard work - it was mission accomplished.

These students proposed a project to help change the world by educating their peers and doing something to decrease rising carbon dioxide amounts.

With the help of grant money, theyíve begun their efforts.

The students researched and finally chose a greenhouse which was placed on school grounds  last Friday.

The grant was from the Sustainability Institute and Low Country Earth Force.

The greenhouse will be given to Wando High Schoolís Special Needs Department. Those students will maintain the greenhouse while learning job skills.    

Powellís class told the grant selection committee that because Charleston County is filled with traffic and growing populations, residents are seeing a diminishing air quality.  

ìIncreasing populations demand land to build homes, businesses and shopping, taking away natural resources via trees which help reduce carbon dioxide in our atmosphere,î the proposal said.

The students plan to use the  greenhouse to successfully raise a large number of tree seedlings and assorted plants which would be planted on  campus and donated to civic groups to plant in the community.  

In addition, the objective of their project is to educate over 3000 students to the need of reducing carbon dioxide by making a PowerPoint presentation to the entire school.

Because the resource department agreed to maintain the greenhouse, a wheelchair accessible entrance and wheel chair accessible tables for students to work in the greenhouse will be put in. In addition, the greenhouse will be available for science classes to learn about plants and conduct research projects.

ìBy helping to grow and plant trees in the community, students will see their trees get taller each year and be reminded of the need to reduce our carbon footprint, even one tree at a time,î the proposal said.

The class made a budget of $5250 for the cost of purchasing and building the 8í x 20í greenhouse. A building supply company has offered to donate wood for ramp and tables.  The final $1750 was needed for pouring a pervious concrete base, sturdy trays that can be carried across wheel chair arm rests, peat pellets, water buckets, a lock for the door and lots of seeds.  Whole Foods has also offered to donate additional plants for students to work with in the greenhouse.

In addition, the students are working in conjunction with the Town of Mount Pleasantís tree planting program.

Trees will be planted in the spring for National Arbor Day celebrations.

The class was informed Monday that their project was selected as the regional winner from Lowcountry Earth Force.

The class will be honored by Earth Force and SFFL at an award presentation on Wednesday at Staples at Patriots Plaza where they will receive a $500 donation of Staples Eco-Friendly products for the school.

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