Environmentally Speaking

A park ranger from Hanging Rock State Park is making a difference in communities across North Carolina through DEQ’s environmental education program. Darius Pollard completed the North Carolina Environmental Education Certification Program offered by DEQ, which he began as an AmeriCorps member at New River State Park in Ashe County. 

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Secretary Donald R. van der Vaart talks about his experience as part of the N.C. Competes for Jobs Tour in a letter to the Richmond County Daily Journal. He described the McCrory administration’s commitment to protecting the environment while creating jobs and making North Carolina even more business-friendly. To read the letter, click here: https://yourdailyjournal.com/opinion/letters/26139/letter-mccrory-administration-grows-jobs-while-protecting-environment

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In light of the Flint crisis, a DEQ expert explains how the state environmental agency ensures that North Carolinians have clean drinking water. Read about it in the Salisbury Post op-ed from Linda Culpepper, deputy director of DEQ’s Division of Water Resources. To read the article, click here: http://www.salisburypost.com/2016/03/23/state-tests-for-lead-in-nc-water/

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Pull out those snapshots – there are only a few days left to enter the North Carolina Reef Guide Photo Contest! The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries’ Artificial Reef Program is looking for photos that show the abundant fisheries resources available on North Carolina’s artificial reefs and the different ways people use the reefs. The grand prize winner will receive a $125 cash prize and the photo will be featured on the front cover of the 2016 Marine Fisheries Reef Guide.

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March madness isn’t just about basketball; it also can describe the pollen season. Pollen levels in North Carolina generally reach their highest levels in early to mid-spring when many native trees are flowering, so many pollen sufferers are approaching their most maddening season. People who are bothered by allergies may want to limit their time outdoors until pollen levels subside, particularly during early morning hours and when it is windy outside. Keeping doors and windows shut with air conditioners running will help reduce pollen levels indoors.

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We have good news to report about a site the state environmental agency has successfully cleaned up in Durham. Staff in Governor McCrory’s environmental agency are letting residents in the West Club Boulevard area know that the former One-Hour Martinizing dry-cleaning business – once contaminated by dry cleaning solvents – has been cleaned up. The cleanup was so successful that the state will now be able to consider the 1103 West Club Boulevard site for safe redevelopment.   

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The head of the state environmental agency honored the agency’s most environmentally conscientious employees Wednesday. Secretary Donald R. van der Vaart recognized 17 state employees and groups with DEQ’s 2015 Sustainability Awards. The awards are presented to state employees who have successfully launched projects at work that save taxpayers money and minimize environmental impacts. In many cases, these projects allow the state to perform daily tasks using far less paper and electricity. A ceremony was held Wednesday afternoon in DEQ’s Green Square headquarters in Raleigh.  

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