Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Learning Lab on Jersey Island

After hearing that the Twitchell Island site, where most of the testing is completed, would be closed after this year, the AFRI committee decided to find a spot for a Learning Lab to run the DSC part of the grant project.

The best, and first, choice for a local place where students could conduct experiments was Jersey Island. Jersey Island is a 3,500 acre island accessed by Cypress Road in Oakley and located between Oakley and Bethel Island.

The island is owned by Ironhouse Sanitary District and used to dispose of the District's recycled water. While disposing of the recycled water the district uses the water to irrigate hay fields. The hay is then used to feed cattle, which in turn is sold to offset rates for the Sanitary District.

Map of Jersey Island.

In February 2013 the DSC attended a Ironhouse Sanitary District Board meeting and during public comment requested use of 5,000 square feet of space on the island to build a Learning Lab where rice could be grown and students would be able to access and run experiments. 

In March 2013 the DSC again attended the Ironhouse Sanitary District Board meeting as an agenda item and ask for use of the property with a slideshow explaining the program. The ISD Board voted for the use of the property and allowed the project to begin immediately.

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