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      City of McAllen saving green by going green

      In an effort to ~go green TM, save the planet, and money the City of McAllen has introduced a new component to these efforts---electric buses. The Rio Grande Valley is going to lose a billion dollars from Austin, Mayor Richard Cortez told Action 4 News.

      We TMre going to have to be really efficient in how government is going to provide services|this will really help. This new ~go green TM effort will allow the city to put three city buses ~online TM"meaning they will be completely electric.

      To power these buses, the city will place charging stations along the route. The project will, in turn, reduce energy consumption and fuel costs by 80 percent. I think the public appreciates the importance and the necessity and benefits of being clean and green, Cortez said. That will be the wave of the future. The McAllen Recycling Center reported that all of the cardboard, plastic, and aluminum (just to name a few) that made their way through the center saved the city well over $300,000 in Fiscal year 2008 and 2009. We get a lot of response now, Director of the Recycling Center Chris Lash said. I think this newer generation is really embracing it and growing up to be more environmentally conscience. Lash added, every year the city recycles thousands of tons of waste that would normally end up in a landfill.

      She said now these items are being reused in places like the new McAllen Library. There are so many components in here that do qualify for LEAD, Victor Gonzalez, project manager for the new library, said. It would probably be up there in the silver and gold ranking. Everything from the chairs to skylights"computers and sidewalks"all have some ~green TM component. The library opens on December 10, 2011.