Picture this: the roof of your home, covered with a light-green mixture of pincushion moss and salvaged fishing nets. This “seawool” layer is locally sourced, easily renewable, aesthetically pleasing, and – because it naturally shields the hot sun, thus reducing the need for A/C – your electric bills are lower, perhaps by as much as $300 each year.
If that sounds far fetched, meet Shelby Cerwonka and Jasmine Reighard, recent grads from the Dept. of Natural Resources and Environmental Management. Since their junior year, the students have been building mock houses at the Magoon Research and Education Station, collecting fishing nets and the native moss Leucobryum glaucum, attaching the seawool and moss to the roofs, and waiting patiently for the moss to grow so they could measure the effect.
Shelby and Jasmine were the recent guests of KHON2 and Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
Read the full UH Story and Video.