EPA 2013 National Sustainable Design Expo

April 20, 2013

Two Johns Hopkins student teams traveled to D.C.’s National Mall last week to show off their “green” ideas at the 2013 National Sustainable Design Expo, sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. As part of a program named P3: People, Prosperity and Planet Student Design Competition for Sustainability, the EPA provided $15,000 initial grants to each of the Johns Hopkins teams and to more than 40 other students groups from across the nation. The best student designs will receive an additional $90,000 in funding from EPA to advance their designs and bring them to the marketplace. The EPA will announce the P3 “phase II” awards in May 2013.

AlgaFuture, a project that aims to link wastewater treatment to algae cultivation for the production of biofuels and food for sustainable aquaculture, won the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Youth Council on Sustainable Science and Technology (YCOSST) Award. The team of undergraduates and graduate students from the departments of Geography and Environmental Engineering and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, received the $1,000 award at the conclusion of the expo.

The other Johns Hopkins team showed off their ram pump, a simple, low-cost technology that is helping improve the irrigation of vegetable gardens that provide nutrition and income for families in remote rural communities in South Africa. The ram pump is a tried and tested design—students with the Johns Hopkins chapter of Engineers Without Borders-USA (EWB-USA) have successfully implemented eight of these devices across South Africa since the start of the project in 2006.

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