Caring for our Watersheds

Caring for our Watersheds

April 01, 2014 08:00 ET

Caring for our Watersheds Announces 2014 Contest Winners

Local Students Find Innovative Environmental Solutions

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA--(Marketwired - April 1, 2014) - Sacramento area high school students presented their proposals at the final competition of the Caring for Our Watersheds (CFW) contest - a joint program of Agrium and the Center for Land-Based Learning (CLBL). 2014 finalists were from the following high schools: Colusa, Antelope, Mira Loma, George Washington Carver, Valley, and Tokay. Over 330 proposals were received from Grades 9-12 students who answered the question, "What can you do to improve your watershed?" Students researched their local watershed, identified an environmental concern and came up with a realistic solution. Finalists gave presentations to a panel of community judges and all received cash awards.

Julie Fukunaga is proud to place first in the 2014 Caring for our Watersheds (CFW) contest for her proposal, Autonomous Solar-Powered Boat for Algae Control, which provides an innovative alternative to using chemicals for algae-control in small water bodies. Algal blooms are caused by overload of nitrogen and phosphates into an aquatic system. The rapid increase of algae and subsequent decay can result in hypoxic conditions and potential fish kills. Her project and device seek to address existing algae problems in more environmentally-friendly and cost effective way.

As a result of her efforts, Fukunaga won $1,000 for herself and $1,000 for her school, Tokay High School, for first place in the contest. . In total, students compete for over $6,000 cash rewards and participating schools are eligible for over $11,000 cash rewards. Agrium also provides $10,000 in funding to help implement students' ideas.

"The purpose of the contest is simple," says Agrium Inc. program advisor Lindsey Metheral. "Our goal is to encourage students to learn about their local watershed and be inspired to make improvements to the land, air and water. With community and school support, we have seen the creativity and determination students have for protecting and preserving the environment. It's inspiring when they turn their ideas into reality."

Each year more projects are implemented with the help of community resources and environmental organizations. Anyone who enters the contest is eligible for funding to complete his/ her project. "Seeing students implement their projects is truly impressive. Caring for Our Watersheds not only encourages youth-led ideas, but helps make them happen," says Beth Del Real of Center for Land-Based Learning.

To schedule a media interview, please contact Beth Del Real directly at 530.795.1544.

Final Results

Final Place Award Team Members Proposal Name School
1st $1000 Julie Fukunaga Autonomous Solar-Powered Boat for Algae Control Tokay High School
2nd $900 Taylor Davies Use the Drip and Drop the Drought Colusa High School
3rd $800 Nicholas Moresco Fins and Farms Colusa High School
4th $700 Emerald Johnson,
Zoe Phillips
Demonstrating the Benefits of Pervious Concrete George Washington Carver High School
5th $600 Lynnee Jacks Rainwater Collection- Rain barrels Antelope High School
6th $500 Jennifer Pulido,
Gabrielle Garcia
Landscape for Water Conservation Colusa High School
7th $450 Emma Forester Nurturing Native Bees Antelope High School
8th $400 Sabrina Sullivan Creating a Rain Garden Mira Loma High School
9th $350 Dimitri Moua Eco-Friendly Showerheads Mira Loma High School
10th $300 Judy Phu, Asia Xiong,
Jamilah Ahmach-Antolin
Water Conservation Education Valley High School

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About Agrium:

Agrium Inc. is a major retail supplier of agricultural products and services in Australia and North and South America and a leading global producer and marketer of agricultural nutrients and industrial products. Agrium produces and markets three primary groups of nutrients: nitrogen, phosphate and potash as well as controlled release fertilizers and micronutrients. Agrium's strategy is to grow through incremental expansion of its existing operations and acquisitions as well as the development, commercialization and marketing of new products and international opportunities. Contact us at:

About Center for Land-Based Learning (CLBL)

The Center for Land-Based Learning is dedicated to creating the next generation of farmers and teaching California's youth about the importance of agriculture and watershed conservation. Combining innovative hands-on experience with classroom learning, participants in CLBL's many programs develop leadership skills, learn how sustainable agriculture practices contribute to a healthier ecosystem, and create connections to agricultural, environmental, and food system careers. We do this by engaging students and the community in the below programs: SLEWS (Student Landowner Education and Watershed Stewardship), FARMS Leadership, GreenCorps, the California Farm Academy, and Caring for Our Watersheds. For more information, please visit

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