Friday, October 17, 2008

N.C. State Fair works to be more eco-friendly

With their bright lights, cooking grease, and energy-consuming rides, state fairs are not traditionally easy on the planet. But one state is attempting to alleviate some of its fair's environmental impact.

The North Carolina State Fair, which started yesterday and runs through Oct. 26, has set up four recycling stations at the fairgrounds, in an attempt to reduce the trash created by aluminum cans and drink bottles. Many of the lights on rides will use light-emitting diodes, which use 1/200th of the energy used by regular lightbulbs. There will also be a "Green NC" exhibit, writes Martha Quillin in The News & Observer of Raleigh, to show visitors "ways to reduce their carbon imprints and invite them to promise to be better environmental stewards."

"I'm kind of proud of us," said Bill McClure, facilities engineer for the fairgrounds. "We're trying. Some of the stuff that we're doing now, we've been talking about for 20 years." One of the more interesting initiatives started on the fairgrounds was the underground installation of three 1,000-gallon tanks to collect used cooking oil. The oil will be converted to biodiesel and used to fuel farm machinery on state-owned research farms and tractor-trailers that deliver commodities to schools. (Read more)

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