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Holland, Pa. girl wins EPA’s President’s Environmental Youth Award

Release Date: 08/27/2014
Contact Information: Roy Seneca seneca.roy@epa.gov 215-814-5567

PHILADELPHIA -- (August 27, 2014) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has awarded 15-year old May Wang from Holland, Pa. with a 2013-2014 President’s Environmental Youth Award (PEYA) for the experiments she conducted about removing a common contaminant from drinking water.

“Energetic students like May Wang and all the young people who competed for the PEYA awards have the enthusiasm to promote awareness of our nation’s environment,” said EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin. “Her water project demonstrates the kind of leadership needed to take on tough environmental challenges.”

Wang, a rising junior at Council Rock High School in Holland, experimented with using activated charcoal to remove Bisphenol A (BPA) from water supplies. BPA, which has been shown to cause reproductive and developmental effects in animal studies, is used in the manufacture of a wide range of consumer and industrial products. From her experiments, Wang concluded that activated charcoal as a filter is effective for removal and is active for a number of times after the initial use.

In addition to the PEYA program, May’s research paper was accepted for presentation at the American Water Resource Association’s 50th Annual Water Resource Conference, and the Association for Environmental Health and Science Foundation’s 30th Annual International Conference on Soils, Sediments, Water, and Energy later this year.

Wang was one of 60 students nationwide to receive a PEYA award this year. The PEYA program is about promoting awareness of our nation's natural resources, encouraging positive community involvement, and recognizing students who can do these things and prove themselves to be outstanding young leaders in environmental stewardship.

For more information on PEYA, visit: http://www2.epa.gov/education/presidents-environmental-youth-award . For a complete list of PEYA winners, visit: http://www2.epa.gov/education/presidents-environmental-youth-award-peya-winners.