Worms Are Latest Step Toward Conservation By NC Legislature

There's something new on the menu at the Legislative Building in Raleigh -- garbage, and the customers love it. At least, the wiggly red ones do.

Statehouse cafeteria workers are feeding scraps to worms, who turn the refuse into compost to be used on plants, grass and other landscaping around the building.

It's the latest effort on the part of legislative workers to reduce waste and electricity use. Officials say the statehouse staff's efforts to go green have bypassed almost every other state agency.

Larry Shirley, head of the State Energy Office, says state government has saved $66 million over the past four years through efforts to conserve or recycle electricity and water. He says the state buildings have a long way to go to match the private sector, but there's no better way to demonstrate sustainable design than at "the people's house."