Environmentally Speaking

DEQ was recently recognized nationally as a 2016 Best Workplaces for Commuters Race to Excellence Award Winner for Best Employer! Best Workplaces for Commuters, a program designed to encourage sustainable transportation innovation, recognized 17 employers nationwide earlier this month during the annual “Race to Excellence” Virtual Awards Ceremony. The awards recognize organizations who have taken exemplary steps to offer transportation options such as vanpool and transit benefits or telework and compressed workweek for their employees.

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A state environmental program that has helped create thousands of jobs and spurred more than $14 billion in economic growth has celebrated a big milestone.  The North Carolina Brownfields Program this week celebrated the signing of its 400th agreement, which puts special conditions for developers to cleanup or mitigate contamination so a site can be safely redeveloped and put back into productive use.

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Educators from all regions of North Carolina gathered at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences’ Nature Research Center last week for the 6th annual meeting for nonformal educators. The meeting reached its highest attendance to date with more than 90 nonformal educators representing a wide variety of nonprofit and city, county, state and federal agencies and facilities, including nature centers, science museums, gardens, arboretums, aquariums, state parks, the N.C. Forest Service, the Wildlife Resources Commission, 4-H, Soil and Water Conservation Districts and others. 

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Did you know that Earth Day was started right in the United States by a US Senator from Wisconsin named Gaylord Nelson?  Having witnessed oil spills and environmental degradation, he used the anti-war movement started by students to join social and environmental consciousness.  He enlisted the help of Pete McCloskey (Republican Congressman) and Denis Hayes (Harvard Professor), two very smart guys who were also very different.   

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Many know the story of Robin Hood, or the pop culture significance of Robin Hood the hero, a commoner who stole from the rich to give to the poor, in the myriad of stories about his life one thing is clear: he made the seemingly elusive very tangible, and improved lives with his efforts. 

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