Effective Microorganism™ (EM®) Teacher Workshops in Hawaii
In partnership with Hiromichi Nago, President of EM Hawaii LLC, Colleen Murakami, Education Specialist with the Office of Curriculum Instruction and Student Support, Department of Education, we sponsored workshops for interested K-12 teachers on Effective Microorganism™ (EM®).
EM® 1 Workshop
Hiro Nago provided background information on EM Technology® and the use of EM•1® in solving various environmental problems locally and globally.
One of the impressive current projects is the huge effort to improve the water quality of the Dotonbori River in Osaka, Japan by parents, students, community organizations and business establishments by using EM•1® and EM•1® bokashi mud balls (genki balls). Teachers were very interested in this project for it relates to the problems we have with Hawaii’s streams and water resources.
Teachers also learned that there are a number of farms and facilities statewide that were already applying EM•1® to raise higher quality, faster growing products or to address other problems such as odor or algae growth control. EM•1® users have been pleased with the product because it allowed them to greatly reduce use of caustic substances such as pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, fertilizers, clorox and other harsh cleansing chemical agents. Operational costs were also decreased. Teachers were impressed with the many success stories.
Many hands-on student activities were shared during the workshop. Teachers followed recipes to make EM•1® bokashi and EM•1® bokashi mud balls. Using the EM•1® bokashi, teachers went through the process of how to recycle kitchen waste and how to improve the garden soil using kitchen waste. Student investigations using EM•1® bokashi, Activated EM•1® with rinsed rice water and EM•1® bokashi mud balls were also shared.
At the end of the day each teacher participant carried home approximately 4 lbs. of EM•1® bokashi, a few genki balls [see EM® Leaflet no. 7], Activated EM•1® with rinsed rice water, a EM•1® bokashi sandwich, potting soil with EM® soil from kitchen waste, and other teacher resources to experiment on their own and to prepare for their students
After spending a full day on Saturday learning and sharing about EM Technology®, teachers left the workshop energized. Comments in their evaluation included the following:
- “We are living on an IOU regarding what can we do to help us sustain the earth and the level of life as we it today. Here is an important and practical solution to this endeavor.”
- “I’d definitely like to try its use in the classroom and as a school project to address water pollution problems.”
- “I learned how to naturally care for the environment by using what is already in nature.”
- “So many applications for math and science!”
- “EM Technology® may possibly be an answer to some of our environmental problems in beginning systemic changes. If we can educate the public and get people to work together on this, we may be able to save our earth systemically.”
- “The world needs to learn about EM Technology®!”
EM® II Workshop – A Field Trip
A field trip was organized to provide teachers who completed the EM Technology® 1 training an opportunity to learn first-hand from field personnel how EM•1® is used to address their environmental, farming and animal husbandry problems. The workshop also provided an update and sharing of EM Technology® projects, including the Dotonbori River Project. Another objective was to take a critical look at a major environmental problem -- the increasing amount of solid waste and the use of Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill.
At the Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill teachers observed the traffic of large dump trucks carrying the over-load of waste that H-Power could not incinerate. More than one million tons of waste end up at the landfill per year. The waste, bulldozed and buried layer upon layer, will remain untouched for thirty years.
One of the problems of the landfill is that buried waste does not easily break down into soil. Therefore, the landfill will continue to need additional land over time. Another problem is that the waste may affect our ground water. A third concern is the toxic solids and gases in the waste. A fourth problem is the foul odor that is produced.
Apparently, what is needed at the landfill is a Technology that can quickly break down the organic waste into soil, that can render heavy metals and other harmful substances non-toxic and can also eliminate harmful gases and foulodors. Teachers saw the possible use of EM Technology® as part of the solution at the landfill.
The Kaneshiro farm in Nanakuli was another of our stops. Mr. Owen Kaneshiro shared his use of EM•1® in raising high quality vegetables for the markets. The lettuce crop was growing beautifully and was about ready for harvest. Mr. Kaneshiro’s success is partly due to the many experiments he conducted using EM•1®. We were very fortunate to be able to do a taste test of the product. Mr. Kaneshiro generously shared his lettuce crop with the teachers. Thumbs up for the lettuce – excellent in taste and texture!
Our third stop was at Mikilua Poultry Farm, Oahu’s largest egg layer operation. Mrs. Phyllis Shimabukuro-Geiser provided a description of the operation and the use of EM•1® to deal with odor and fly problems from 1999 to the present date. EM•1® positively affected the environment for the chickens as well as the workers. By regularly misting the chicken cages with EM•1®, the ammonia level decreased, as well as the fly population. Neighbors were surprised that they no longer had to cope with the chicken manure odor. The quality of the manure also improved because of the EM•1®.
The Honolulu Zoo was our last stop after lunch. Teachers learned that the Zoo has been using EM•1® since 1996. Today, fewer chemicals are being used in caring for the animals. As a result, the zoo environment is much healthier for the animals as well as for the staff. We met “Cleo,” a hippopotamus who is more than half a century old. Her poor health was a concern and zoo officials did not expect her to live much longer. With the use of EM•1® to spray down her facility daily, and the use of EM•1® in the pond water, her general health has improved significantly. Today, the zoo staff predicts that Cleo will live for a number of years. The EM•1® applications reduced algae growth in the hippo pond and the strong odor of her standing waste water in her holding pen. Joggers and neighbors have stopped complaining about the odor, an amazing development!
The EM Technology® 11 field trip was held on a Saturday, from 8 am to 4 p m. In the evaluation, teachers were enthusiastic about what they had observed. As one teacher commented, “ EM•1® in practice is the greatest testimony. Loved the workshop.” And another concluded, “We must introduce it to the younger generation so they think EM Technology®.”
EM Hawaii, LLC. : www.emhawaii.com
560 N. Nimitz Hwy., Suite 217A, Honolulu, HI 96817
Tel / Fax: 808"548"0396