EcoTrack 11: Pesticide-free student invention

MONROE, Mich -- To get rid of pests in the garden, most people would try pesticides. But local college sophomore Cara Peterson built her own exterminator with an environmentally friendly twist.

Meteorologist James Canterbury has this EcoTrack 11 report.

Cara Peterman, a student at Monroe County Community College, tells News 11, "It doesn't deal with herbicides and pesticides and to me that's the most important thing." Cara's homemade device uses plain old carbon dioxide to suffocate and kill bugs. "I'm not a big pesticide, herbicide, insecticide person," she says, "so this is a way that I can kill aphids and still eat my herbs and food without fear of chemicals."

Cara's biochemistry professor, Lori Bean, told her to write a paper about the invention for the Michigan Liberal Arts Network for development competition. She won first place, $100, and full publication in the Journal for Student Scholars.

Bean thinks there are more great things in store for Cara's exterminator. "Just like you have a vacuum cleaner in your closet at home, you're going to have a C0-2 generator that is a pesticide-free, organic apparatus to get rid of your pests."

While a patent is in the works, Cara is thinking more of her immediate future. "From there, I'm gonna start working on a bachelors degree in biology. Maybe minoring in chemistry or government...I'm not sure. I don't know...I could use it possibly in a master's degree."

Posted by LS