Are you concerned about the environment? Do you yearn to make a positive impact to your environment but are not sure where to start? Or, do you make successful strides but simply want to go further on your journey to go green?
Hayden-Winkelman is one of three areas in Arizona chosen to participate in Project Harvest through the University of Arizona College of Soil, Water and Environmental Science. The other two areas where training has already occurred are Globe-Miami and Dewey-Humboldt.
The offered training, which was held in the Hayden-Winkelman area on July 25 – 27, isn’t required to participate in Project Harvest. A quick online trip to projectharvest.arizona.edu will allow you to sign up.
Participation begins with training, when it is available and if it is desired, in how to collect samples of water, soil, and vegetable samples from your garden for environmental analysis. During training, you will meet others in your community who are of a similar mind.
From there, you go on to collect the samples and conduct experiments at home. Participants will be given a kit filled with tools needed to sample your harvested water, soil and/or vegetables. You will work with traditional laboratory supplies and DIY gear. Sampling and testing began in the winter of 2017 and will run through the winter of 2020.
Tests will be run to determine the concentration of potential contaminants in environmental samples. Sample testing will primarily occur at the University of Arizona, but, sometimes, in your own backyard.
Beginning in 2020 through 2021, data sharing will take place. You will receive a report on environmental results and gather with community members and researchers to discuss results and, if necessary, ways to reduce your exposure to pollutants.
Regarding Project Harvest, Professor Ramirez-Andreotta said, “The goal of the project is to understand the fate and transportation of potential pollutants in harvested water and how these possible pollutants might impact soil, plant and human health. Evaluate the learning outcomes of a citizen science and community-engaged approach to research. I have been working with Jeff Gregorich for almost a year on this project.”
Topics of the workshop held late last month included climate change, health and environmental quality. Participants learned how to install a water harvesting system, and were trained in how to collect harvested water, soil, and/or vegetable samples from their gardens for environmental analysis. They also met others in the community who are interested in environmental and food quality. Nineteen teachers went through the three-day training and received certificates of completion.
For more information, please contact: Mónica Ramírez-Andreotta, PhD by email at email@example.com or by calling 520-621-0091. Monica Ramirez-Andreotta is Assistant Professor of Environmental Science at the University of Arizona and an awardee of ‘Advancing Informal Environmental STEM Literacy & Learning: Co-Created Citizen Science Rainwater Harvesting in Underserved Communities’, a five-year National Science Foundation grant.