Environmentally Speaking

Bruce Nicholson has a great story to share about the state Brownfields program he leads. The program has led to the successful cleanup and redevelopment of hundreds of sites and bolstered the economies in many North Carolina communities. Last week, Nicholson shared his program’s story with a group of engineers visiting from China. The engineers are employees of an energy company from Hangzhou who were visiting to learn more about the state’s Brownfields program.

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Earlier this week Secretary Donald van der Vaart visited Winston-Salem to tour Industries for the Blind, a manufacturing company that employs people who are blind or visually impaired. Industries for the Blind recently partnered with DEQ’s Waste Reduction Partners, who studied the company’s environmental impact and provided them with cost-saving strategies and resources to help them become more energy efficient.

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Planning a fishing trip to the North Carolina coast? Check out the new North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries Artificial Reef Guide. This new 131-page, full-color guide is printed on waterproof paper and provides detailed information about each of the state’s 62 reefs, including diagrams of each site showing all reef material, GPS coordinates, and material deployment dates.

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A study by the state environmental agency shows encouraging trends for North Carolina’s efforts to divert wholesome, uneaten food from landfills so it can be used to feed the hungry. The “N.C. Organics Recycling Study” revealed that last year 15,000 tons, of wholesome and perishable food was donated and fed to people. Most of that food was donated by grocery stores, restaurants, catering companies, farmers, and other businesses to food rescue organizations that delivered the food to soup kitchens and shelters, said Jorge Montezuma, the Organics Recycling specialist who conducted the study.

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Even if you aren’t a Pokemon Go player, chances are you have seen the stories on the news and noticed people playing in parks, on the street and in other public places. This augmented reality game fad has also caught the attention of North Carolina's environmental education providers. DEQ’s Office of Environmental Education is pitching in to help by offering resources and current research on the educational potential and other aspects of augmented reality games.  

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Read the Hendersonville Times-News to hear from our Director of DEQ’s Division of Waste Management describe how the state is cleaning up contaminated property across NC to protect the environment using risk-based remediation. Click here: http://www.blueridgenow.com/article/20160810/OPINION/160819998?tc=ar

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