Teams of 9th graders named X-Butts from A3 Engineering and Science University Magnet School have discovered a problem and are determined to fix it.
The issue the team is trying to resolve is reducing the amount of cigarette butts on the ground. X-Butts believe this issue is important because it’s harming animals, our drinking water, and the environment. 1.5 million trees are cut downeveryday to make a pack of cigarettes. Cigarette butts have been found inside the bellies of birds, squirrels, turtles and rabbits. Butts find their way into our drinking water contaminating it putting us at risk of drinking unsafe water. Cigarette butts are not biodegradable meaning they’ll never go away. If the team doesn’t do something about this now, our water will be contaminated, our vegetation will be destroyed and children’s may get sick from thinking butts are toys.”[Cigarette butts] also present a threat to wildlife. Cigarette filters have been found in the stomachs of fish, birds, whales and other marine creatures who mistake them for food … Composed of cellulose acetate, a form of plastic, cigarette butts can persist in the environment as long as other forms of plastic.”
–Clean Virginia Waterways. Dr. Tom Novotny; professor from San Diego State University stated,” Butts release the same toxic cancer chemicals found in cigarettes such as Nicotine, Ethyl phenol, and Arsenic.There video can be found at http://www.youtube.com/user/CAPublicHealth?feature=
The Team X-Butts aren’t the only ones to see this issue, BUT they have an effective solution. That no-one else was able to come up with, stated by Precious Szostek, Captain of X-Butts, supported by her teammate Mohamed Kane. http://web.vtc.edu/mt/102/Projects/ElectronicNotebooks/SectionA/JoshCross/cig4_1.html
They have conducted experiments backing up the science behind their problem. The first experiments that were tested were the ph. of the water when cigarettes are littered. They have found the ph. (acidity of water) increased! This is a huge problem, stated by the team. Because animals adapt to there environment the ph. level increase impacts the animals dangerously. The next experiment is to test insulation for our prototype. We tested sand because it can absorb heat and eliminate the smell of the cigarettes; so consumers don’t feel insecure about the smell in their pocket.Kathleen Register is the founder and executive director of Clean Virginia Waterways, and coordinates the International Coastal Cleanup in Virginia.She did experiment
The team has decided to do something about this issue by creating a model design of an improvised cigarette box to put an extra alternative storage space to place cigarette butts. They used bio-minupulation and responsible design. Responsible design is to design a product that doesn’t harm factors in the environment. Bio-minupulation is using the idea from the environment to make an improved design. Because pockets can be found in almost everything in the environment. Such as kangaroos.
This way people could put their butts in a safe place until they can throw them away properly. This isn’t just helping us it’s helping the world . Creating less pollution and helping us have cleaner water . X-butts is a way to help us , you , our world , and our animals .
On May 4th in Hartford, Expo Convention center the Team will compete to win and help their towns, to keep it clean and safe for everyone with 4 feet or 2.