PITTSBORO — Celebrate Earth Day Thursday, April 21, at Central Carolina Community College’s Chatham County Campus. Visitors are to meet at 12:15 p.m. in front of the new Chatham Community Library, 197 Highway 87 North, at the campus in Pittsboro.
Laura Lauffer, the college’s sustainability coordinator, will lead a tour of the campus’ Chatham Community Library and Sustainable Technologies Center. Both buildings were designed to meet high U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards.
Fred Royal, director of the Chatham County Department of Environmental Resources, will talk about the stormwater recycling system that serves both buildings. Royal, a professional engineer, has a Master of Project Management in Environmental Engineering from Northwestern University. He holds several certificates, including floodplain manager. Royal’s professional interests include stormwater and water policy, flood hazard mitigation, and low impact development.
Earth Day was started in the United States in 1970 by U.S. Sen. Gaylord Nelson in order to increase awareness and appreciation of the natural environment. Events are now held annually in nations all over the world. For 2011, Earth Day falls on April 22. CCCC is observing it on April 21 because the college will be closed April 22 for the Easter holiday.
At the Chatham Campus, sustainable agriculture students will plant a tree in honor of Earth Day. Following the tree planting, Tim Watson, president of the board of directors of EarthWalk Alliance, will announce the establishment of a scholarship with the CCCC Foundation to benefit sustainable technologies students. EarthWalk Alliance is a non-profit organization, headquartered in Hillsborough, which promotes environmental stewardship.
Visitors will also have the opportunity to view a short video on the college’s sustainable programs. The video recently won a first place in the National Wildlife Federation’s Chill Out competition.