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Students plan cutting-edge climate study
Students at Sisler High School will soon learn a great deal more about the environment through a unique biosphere project designed to study the effects of global warming.
"It’s really a cutting-edge concept," said teacher Greg Shedden.
"We’re basically going to create a living classroom with native flora and simple fauna. We are going to control the environment in such a way that, over a number of years, we’ll be able to examine the effect of shorter winters on prairie life."
Shedden said that a outdoor courtyard walled in by several sections of the school has already been set aside for the biosphere.
With $685 in support from the city, delivered on March 12 by Coun. Mike Pagtakhan (Point Douglas), Students of Sisler Environmental Helpers intends to hire architects and engineers in order to develop a final plan.
"We may just put a plexi-glass roof above the entire courtyard, we may build a greenhouse within the courtyard. We’ll see," Shedden said.
Melinda Penwarden, a Grade 12 student at the school, is one of approximately 30 members of SOSEH. She has been involved in everything from recycling and composting efforts to organic gardening and an apple orchard planted on school grounds to benefit Winnipeg Harvest.
Penwarden will oversee the biosphere project on behalf of the group.
"I’m very proud to be a member of SOSEH because the environment means a lot to me," she says.
"I believe that if we can alter our ways of living to sustain and respect the environment, then many of the natural disasters occurring today will be reduced. However, if we do not reduce our carbon footprints, I believe the environment will always be in danger of irreversible deterioration."
Penwarden explained there are plans to wire the biosphere with webcams, which will allow the school to share the biosphere with students around the world.
The group is also raising money to install geothermal heating in the school’s gymnasium, which could be used to control environmental conditions in the biosphere.
Anyone interested in making a donation to the project can do so by calling the school at 589-8321.
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(1 of 10 articles for this week)05/21/2013 10:44 AM 0
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