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Announcing This Year's Envirothon Winners

Buncombe County is home to the state winners of the Soils track at the 30th annual NC State Envirothon! Congratulations team E.N.V.I.R.O.T.H.O.N.! The NC Envirothon is an exciting natural resource education program designed to challenge students in an interactive, outdoor competition where middle and high school teams (consisting of 3-5 students) are tested in areas of Wildlife, Forestry, Aquatic Ecology, Soils, and Land Use and Current Environmental Issues.  Every year the teams compete in local, regional, and state competitions for the opportunity to compete at the National Envirothon. 

On March 24, five teams from Nesbitt Discovery Academy High School competed in the Area 1 Envirothon. Our teams did well with team E.N.V.I.R.O.T.H.O.N. placing 2nd in the competition. The Area 1 competition prepares students to compete at the state level. When the scores for the competition were tallied, Buncombe County held four of the top five places and were moving on to states!  

The 30th annual NC State Envirothon was held virtually on April 16, 2021. Due to COVID restrictions, this year’s competition saw teams competing in their home counties and submitting their test responses for each testing track. The competition saw 80 teams competing for placement in each of the five tracks and also for the overall high score amongst the teams. For the first time ever at the state competition, Buncombe County won the soils track! Members of team E.N.V.I.R.O.T.H.O.N. are (from left to right): Jackson Hall (team captain), Natasha Luchinina, Madeline Oakes, Sarita Schneider and Isabella Field. Each student received a medal and a cash award of $100!  Congratulations!

But the wins didn’t stop with the soils track! Team E.N.V.I.R.O.T.H.O.N. also took home 1st place in the Community Service Learning Project for their presentation on Water Quality Monitoring/Wetlands entitled Great Partnerships Protecting a Nearby River.  

Special recognition to Team Lab Rats at Nesbitt Discovery Academy who placed 4th in the highly competitive Oral Presentations their first year competing. The Oral Presentations are an important component of the competition. Being able to orally communicate natural resource material is crucial in addressing environmental problems and issues, particularly in situations and scenarios where collaborative efforts are required to develop practical solutions.  

The Envirothon is the largest environmental science competition in North America. The students compete in their knowledge of natural resource management, identification and critical thinking skills relating to environmental concerns. It is a year-long curriculum combining in-class studies with outdoor training, emphasizing teamwork and higher order thinking skills such as analysis and interpretation. The Envirothon helps develop environmentally aware citizens who are able to assume future leadership roles. The Envirothon program is offered to both Middle and High School students. For more information on how to participate in local, regional, and state Envirothon, please visit or contact Taira Lance with Buncombe Soil and Water Conservation District at 828-250-4787 or