Environmental issues: Bermuda College student Nesta Wellman holds up Sargasso seaweed on South Shore. The seaweed is the subject of a video he is working on with fellow students to submit to the National Trust and Greenrock’s Earth Day Video Competition. *Photo supplied
Environmental issues: Bermuda College student Nesta Wellman holds up Sargasso seaweed on South Shore. The seaweed is the subject of a video he is working on with fellow students to submit to the National Trust and Greenrock’s Earth Day Video Competition. *Photo supplied

FRIDAY, MAR. 23: Locally sourced meals, preserving our marine life and the reusable bags over plastic bags debate are all subjects being explored in the National Trust and Greenrock’s Earth Day Student Video Competition.

The two environmental organizations launched the contest in February for middle and high school students and so far there have been some 26 expressed entries.

Entries are still being accepted and will be until April 10 and students can work as individuals or in groups.

Environmental issues

For the competition students, either individuals or teams, were asked to submit a short video of between two to five minutes covering an environmental issue. The films need to demonstrate what students think needs to change and how that change should come about based on a particular theme. The themes include For The Island, For The Earth or For The Sargasso Sea.

A group of Bermuda College students are looking into the benefits of Sargasso Seaweed and its role both locally and internationally. Bermuda College student Nesta Wellman is studying for a Science major and is in the group made up of other students who are in the college’s Eco Club. He explained: “We want to inform the public about the benefits of the seaweed and how it affects the island’s economy, wildlife, and food. Sargasso seaweed provides essential ingredients to the fishing industries, better quality for our farming and food and helps the environment with extra nutrients.

“We did an interivew with Chris Flook, director at PEW Environment Group, brought more insights to the students and how it effects Bermuda’s wildlife and fisheries. It is crucial for many marine life such as turtles (green turtles, loggerheads, hawkesbill), sergeant majors, triggerfish and other fish including the sargasso fish which lives within the seaweed as it provides them with protection and shelter. He also explained about the major issue with plastic and how the fish, birds, and turtles can’t distinguish the difference between what is plastic and what is real food. That is why some changes have been made around the world, in some stores people have to bring their own bottles and fill them with their desired drinks which will help decrease the use of plastic.

“It is essential for farming as it fertilizes the soil and helps give the vegetables extra nutrients.”

Other highlights so far include Dellwood School’s project to try to raise awareness of the benefits of recycling, Bermuda High School’s video on the topic of ‘the responsibility of one’ exploring sustainable buildings and CedarBridge Academy’s research on locally sourced meals. As part of their video project, Mount Saint Agnes students visited a house that has been fully sufficient on solar panels and local business Bermuda Engineering to explore a device that helps consumers to conserve energy.

Students’ videos will be screened during school assemblies at the end of April. Winners will receive prizes and their video projects will be featured on the Trust and Greenrock’s websites, as well as on TV and in a local film festival.

Students are permitted to seek support from either a teacher, parents, or member of the community and the National Trust and Greenrock is on hand to help find assistance in developing ideas.

Expressions of interest should be submitted to Abbie Caldas, the Trust’s Education Officer at acaldas@bnt.bm Further details about the Earth Day Student Video Competition and how to enter may be found at the Trust’s website at www.bnt.bm or at Greenrock’s website at www.greenrock.org.