Just because it's green doesn't make it mean

Apr 22, 2011 By Christine Dotts

Unlike the spinach smoothie my boot camp instructor tries to get me to drink, just because something is green doesn’t necessarily make it a bad thing. Case in point - Algae.

Here at Intel’s Ocotillo campus in Arizona, as one of the ways our employees are constantly innovating with sustainability in mind, a team found that carbon dioxide emissions produced by the fabrication facility (“the fab”) were well-suited to grow , which can be used to create clean-burning biofuel. The vision of this project is a “Zero Emissions Fab.” This sort of carbon recycling could reduce the overall carbon emissions of the fab and, by creating a sustainable alternative fuel, displace the of burning fossil fuels.

NOTE: Algae ‘fun fact’ - when it is living algae such as the stuff we are growing on the Intel rooftop, it actually smells clean and nice. Dying algae, such as ‘pond scum’, is what produces a foul smell.

This project is part of Intel’s Sustainability in Action program, through which employees can secure funding to share Intel’s expertise in environmental sustainability with communities around the world. This program is a key element in our efforts to drive CSR and sustainability deeper into the corporate culture and engage all employees, not just employees with “CSR” type jobs like environmental engineers, community relations, supply chain responsibility, or corporate diversity. A perfect example is Brad Biddle - Brad’s day job is in Intel’s legal department - yet this project is one that taps not only his curiosity, but his personal passion for sustainability. And his Intel management team has been supportive of his time on this effort.

Check out the videos below to see this proof-of concept model for yourself, and listen to what our very own Brad Biddle has to say about this innovative project!

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