Sustainable Travel International Logo 

 Students for Sustainable Tourism

SST engages undergraduate and graduate students from multiple disciplines in understanding and promoting sustainable tourism by providing first hand experience in the field through creating service, community outreach, and professional development opportunities.


Learn more!

  NC GreenTravel

If you own or manage a lodging, restaurant, park, entertainment or other travel-oriented business, the NC GreenTravel website will provide you with information to help you become more competitive in the green travel arena.Whether your facility is in the mountains, the piedmont, or the coastal area of North Carolina, we can help you go green and save green!

Click to see all NC GreenTravel recognized businesses

For more information contact Tom Rhodes at the NC Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach at (919) 707-8140, or Alex Naar the CST's Director of Outreach at (252) 737-1346

North Carolina Zoological Park

Tell a friend about this page.
All fields required.
Can be sent to only one email address at a time.
Share Facebook Icon Twitter Icon


Sustainable Tourism Practices in North Carolina


NC Zoo


Greenhouse Emissions Management and Reduction

Used cooking oils are collected from onsite restaurants to be refined and converted to biodiesel fuel. This biodiesel blend is used in place of regular petroleum fuel throughout the facility for trams, buses, trucks, tractors and equipment.

Ocelot at the North Carolina ZooSolid Waste Management, Reduction, Reuse and Recycling

Office supplies are reduced through e-mail, bulletin boards, double-sided copying, and reuse of file folders, envelopes, and scrap paper. Invoices and purchase orders are processed electronically to eliminate copying and mailing. Many warehouse supplies including cleaners, paper goods, electrolyte drinks, and drugs are purchased in bulk. Waste products such as office paper, corrugated cardboard, used motor oil, oil filters, tires, batteries, antifreeze, pallets, cooking grease, wood waste, and plastic six-pack rings are sorted for recycling. The composting center is surfaced with recycled coal fly ash and has processes manure, bedding, plant material, kitchen scraps, and corrugated cardboard. All compost is used onsite. A Randolph County Recycling Drop Site is located on the property for mixed paper, newspaper, metal cans, glass containers, and plastic bottles. Collection points are also set up for cell phones recycling, keeping toxic chemicals out of our environment, providing vital emergency services to those in need, and helping to support the education efforts of impoverished peoples of Uganda.

Bears at North Carolina ZooFreshwater Consumption Reduction

For exhibits, irrigation, and cleaning, 62 million gallons of water is used per year. Water for irrigation is mainly supplied from two on-site lakes. Meters were installed in 1996 to monitor water use and detect leaks. High pressure/low volume nozzles are used to clean animal areas.

Energy Efficiency, Conservation and Management

A biodiesel blend, collected from on-site restaurants, is used in place of regular petroleum fuel for trams, buses, trucks, tractors and equipment. Since 1998, a computerized energy management system has been used to control temperature and humidity in each building and exhibit. In the Education Center alone, the system has reduced electricity use by 40%. Rangers and other staff use bicycles for travel in the Park.

Responsible Purchasing

Picnic tables and recycling containers are made from recycled plastic as is decking used in renovation projects.

Children Learning at the North Carolina ZooTraining and Education for Employees and Clients

Information is available for individuals to learn more about what they can do to conserve resources. "Conservation Captains" meet once a month to find ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle waste materials. Decisions from these meetings are implemented park-wide.

Environmental Certifications

  • Certified under ISO 14001 for Environmental Management System (2002)

Environmental Awards

  • The Zoo's Compost Program was awarded the Carolina Recycling Association's Outstanding Compost Program Award (2001)
  • The "Conservation Captains" received the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Environmental Sustainability Award (2000)
  • Governor's Outstanding Source Reduction Award (1999)
  • NC Recycling Association award for Outstanding Source Reduction (1996)

4401 Zoo Parkway

Asheboro, NC 27205

Phone: 336-879-7207

Toll Free: 800-488-0444


Information presented on this Web site is collected, maintained and provided for the convenience of the reader. While every effort is made to keep such information accurate and up-to-date, the state of North Carolina does not certify the accuracy of information that originates from third parties. Under no circumstances shall the state of North Carolina be liable for any actions taken or omissions made from reliance on any information contained herein from whatever source nor shall the state be liable for any other consequences from any such reliance.
Mention of a company should not be considered an endorsement by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, North Carolina Department of Commerce, or East Carolina University.
This site links to other sites, which the Center for Sustainable Tourism at East Carolina University provides for the user’s information and convenience only. The Center neither controls nor monitors these other sites, nor does their inclusion mean that the Center recommends or endorses these sites, the organization or companies that run the sites or anything contained within the sites.
Give To East Carolina University