Anyone walking around the College of Charleston campus has seen and heard the Grounds Crew hard at work maintaining and enhancing the beauty of our campus. While the drone of the equipment can be loud, it’s the emissions, which are toxic for humans and the environment, that caused Zaria Killingsworth, a chemistry major and medical humanities minor, and Anthony Rovinski, a chemistry major and Spanish minor, to take action.
“We had recently learned about particulate matter and some of its sources, one of them being the combustion of fossil fuels,” says Rovinski, referencing his environmental chemistry class with Kate Mullaugh, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry. “Particulate matter can have adverse effects on a person’s health, depending on the concentration of the particles and their sizes. Since a large part of the grounds equipment was gas-powered and the groundskeeper would be in close proximity to a source of particulate matter, we thought it would be best to make strides toward fixing the source of the pollution to not only have a cleaner campus but also improve the health of the Grounds Crew that works hard to keep our campus beautiful.”
Using the College’s Cougar Changemaker Program, which empowers the campus community to create innovative sustainability initiatives, the Honors College students – under the mentorship of Mullaugh – proposed lowering hazardous emissions released at the College by gifting the Grounds Crew with healthier, safer electric-powered equipment.
To learn more, check out the complete article by Darcie Goodwin in The College Today.