Environmental Quality


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Creating a sustainable water purification solution for poor communities in the Philippines: Poor rural communities face the challenge of obtaining clean, drinkable water.  One such community is Nagcarlan, Philippines, which is an agricultural town south of Manila that is dense with coconut trees.  Our project, which is done with Dr. Susan Gallardo in the Chemical Engineering Department at De La Salle University in Manila, leveraged this abundant material by converting coconut shells to activated carbon, which can be used to remove harmful waterborne pollutants.  By housing the materials inside bamboo, which is also abundant in this community, the outcome was an effective, sustainable, and biodegradable water filter that the local citizens can construct independently.  Three other communities are currently interested in this technology, prompting us to begin working with their local governments for potential implementation.  This work has been funded by the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA), the United States Environmental Protection