Synthetic fertilizer is on its way out at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi and thanks to the Islander Green Team, the community garden uses much more organic method to grow sunflowers, dill and much more.
Coffee grounds, tea bags, egg shells and other items that are categorized as food waste is collected daily from the University's Starbucks, Einstein Bros and dining hall; items that would otherwise build up in a landfill is then placed in seven bins. It not only creates a more efficient campus, but also creates a more Eco-friendly environment for the community.
According to Melissa Zamora, President of the Islander Green Team, "It's just food waste that would otherwise buildup in a landfill, in a place they can't get enough oxygen so what it does is create methane gas and it's really potent and 23 times more potent than carbon dioxide. So whenever we divert food waste form the landfill, we're actually reducing our methane admissions and the greenhouse gas effect."
The idea sparked from one student's project, she transformed what was on paper into reality. Now, over 100 students deemed as the Islander Green Team is seen volunteering for the project and their efforts.
"Every single day, we are out there picking up compost material, we're working with the compost…watering it, aerating it, making sure the proper components are in there. We are out here weeding and watering our garden, but we are also doing a lot of education through tabling and outreach," Zamora says.
But, their goal bleeds deeper than the soil.
"We want to inspire other green leaders and be stewardess of the environment best we can. So, building leaders, education, coming up with solutions for our environmental issues…that's all apart of the green team," Zamora says.