Mount Saint Mary’s University

Mount Saint Mary’s University of Los Angeles | Probing for Resilience: Employing a data-driven approach to advocate for the replacement of traditional landscaping with native plants. | Goal 1: Resilient and healthy community environments where residents thrive in place. | Goal 5: Thriving ecosystems, habitats, and biodiversity. | Goal 6: Accessible parks, beaches, recreational waters, public lands, and public spaces that create opportunities for respite, recreation, ecological discovery, and cultural activities.

Water Use Advocacy

This project uses soil (moisture, temperature) and air (light and CO2) sensors on a test plot on the Mount Saint Mary’s campus to advocate for replacing traditional landscaping with native and drought-tolerant plants. The environmental data can be used to 1) identify areas on campus that would most benefit from land transformation, 2) choose the best native plants for the various microclimates on campus, and 3) monitor and document the changes after remediation. Systematically replacing grass and water-intensive landscaping will assist the campus in reaching its sustainability goals by reducing its water footprint. Results can be used to advocate for new approaches to land management throughout the campus, on other campuses and in neighboring communities. And the project serves as a prototype for the study of other ecosystems.

Team: Adriane Jones, PhD, Biology; Lia Roberts, PhD, Political Science and Director for the center of Global initiatives; Advisor: John Deeb, Director of Facilities; Samantha Chajon; Bryanna Castillo; Deanna Solorzano; Siouxsie Luna

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Yours. The built environment. The birds’. Animals wandering onto freeways… The home we all share.

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