DEQ Secretary Regan joins high school students for the 2018 Envirothon Competition

Monday, May 7, 2018 - 2:18pm

DEQ Secretary Michael Regan traveled to Burlington last Saturday to serve as a judge for the 2018 North Carolina Envirothon. Three teams of high school students competed in the final oral presentation demonstrating their knowledge of natural resource conservation and management. Envirothon is a national high school environmental education competition coordinated and supported by the N.C. Division of Soil and Water Conservation and the N.C. Association of Soil and Water Districts on the state level.  

More than 500 of North Carolina’s brightest middle and high school students competed during the two-day competition at Cedarock Park in Burlington. The competition tests the students’ knowledge in aquatics, forestry, soils/land use, wildlife and current environmental issues.

The competition culminates for high school students in a final oral presentation where they are given a real-world issue and present a solution to the issue during a 10-minute presentation. This year’s issue involved a community struggling with flooding impacts.

Regan joined Dietrich Kilpatrick, President of the N.C. Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Vernon Cox, Director of the N.C. Division of Soil and Water Conservation, Rhonda Campbell, Sustainability Manager for Smithfield Foods and Stuart Lee from the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service to judge the oral presentations.

“I enjoyed the opportunity to meet future environmental leaders and decision makers. North Carolina Envirothon encourages our students to think critically about our natural resources,” said Regan. I am proud to support one of the largest environmental competitions in the nation that reaches so many middle and high school students.”

Scholarships and/or awards are given to the top five middle and high school teams, as well as the top high school FFA (Future Farmers of America) team. As the state winners, the Yellow Populars team from Stanley County will be representing North Carolina this summer at the 2018 North America Envirothon competition, July 22-27, in Pocatello, Idaho. There, they will be challenged during the weeklong event by more than 50 other teams from across the U.S., Canada and China.

For a complete list of winners and prizes, visit