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Who we are

We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing a broader understanding and application of sustainable practices.

  • We strive to provide integrated research by connecting sustainable and innovative ideas, technologies, and best practices as they apply to a specific regional economic, cultural, and environmental dynamic.

  • We engage both the public and private sectors to initiate a dialogue around sustainable initiatives and related issues.

  • We champion businesses, educational institutions, governmental agencies, and individuals for their contributions to advanced sustainable practices.

Strengthen our Local Food Systems

“A community food system is one in
which sustainable food production, processing, distribution and consumption are integrated to enhance the environmental, economic, and social and nutritional health of a particular place..” (Steven Garrett & Gail Feenstra. Growing A Community Food System.)

Strengthening our local food systems begins by understanding and sharing the views of farmers, producers, educators, technologists, entrepreneurs, related nonprofit organizations, consumers, and state and local governments on sustainability. This story will tell us what and how we grow, process, distribute, and consume regional agriculture output. This story will also demonstrate that we have a practical and cultural knowledge to share with the public.

Our story-telling approach will be to bring diverse stakeholders together from throughout the region to initiate a dialogue around food-related issues and to work on developing potential solutions to strengthen the local food systems.  Further, we believe the public, as consumers, entrepreneurs, members of the community and policy makers plays the greatest role in strengthening local food systems.  The information shared by various stakeholders would better prepare the public to understand the overlapping relationships among regional economic vitality, community, and environmental health in the context of the local food systems.

To accomplish this, we will conduct a series of one-on-one discussions with stakeholders. Our discussion will help us to better understand the current food systems in Western Nevada’s counties by identifying the existing strengths, weaknesses, and future needs.

Stay tuned!!!

Transforming Small Farmers’ Economies through Sustainability
By Aster Girma

Small farmers, with annual sales of less than $250,000, are the key players in advancing sustainable agriculture. However, they need an information platform that diffuses information about the state of small farm clusters, regional ecosystems, cost saving technologies, sustainable best practices, research, and information flows.  Accessing such information platform improves small farms’ profitability, productivity, and innovation.  It also promotes regional brand identities towards thinking regionally. Further, it opens new avenues for technology transfer and educational opportunities.   

According to the USDA, small farmers made up 88% of U.S farms in 2007. They also held about 64 % of farm assets and 63 % of farmlands. Besides, they are the custodians of the bulk of farm assets; they play a larger role in protecting natural resources and shaping environmental policy. Further, they are the economic backbone of communities and provide fresh produce to the surrounding communities.  Although, small farmers account for 16 percent of the value of U.S production, they rely on off-farm income to support their households. This means they do not have positive operating margins.  This information platform can help improve these margins. read more

The Public Shapes Clean Energy Cluster
By Aster Girma

As a consumer or a legislator, as a promoter or investor, the public is always the impetus to drive or establish new concepts in business and technology. The same rule applies to clean energy industry cluster. The public’s involvement in fostering clean energy promotion is ineluctable. In 2010, AngelouEconomics, an economic development and site selection consultancy based in Austin, Texas, conducted an online survey to learn more about the type of industry clusters the public would like to see in the Northern Nevada region. The rationale for this venture was that public opinion, pertaining to regional industry cluster selection processes, provides valuable information that might be overlooked by any qualitative approach. It is believed that involving the public in the process will provide the foundation for sustainable economic growth in region. Read the report

Findings of the survey validated that the public has greater esteem for industries where balanced growth occurs while using a greater percentage of skilled workers who are awarded higher wages.  These industries are also described as “clean” and “sensitive” to the environment. Out of the total respondents, which included 1,200 residents and businesses, 61% supported clean energy technology, 50% biotech and research, and 43% software related businesses.

The study also incorporated a quantitative approach design to identify regional industry clusters. An industry cluster is a geographically bounded collection of similar and/or related firms that together create competitive advantages for member firms and the regional economy. Among others, it uses a technique called Location Quotients (LQ) analysis to measure. For the Northern Nevada region, clean energy industry clusters do not have a strong presence, with respect to clusters that include solar, geothermal, wind, hydrogen, and other environmental technologies defined to be clean.....read more




Contribution to Sustainable Green Environment:  Peppermill Casino and Spa Geothermal Program

By Abenet Taye,

Nevada Green Institute (NGI) recently had the great opportunity of not only attending a tour of the Peppermill Resort, Casino & Spa, Reno, Nevada’s geothermal program but also to conduct an in-depth interview with Mr. Dean Parker, the Peppermill’s Executive Facility Director. The purpose of the interview was to learn about the benefits of geothermal energy application from the perspective of a business that is both a geothermal energy producer and user. 

The Peppermill has taken advantage of the active underground geothermal reservoir of its geographic location since the early 1980s... read more





A Profitable Sustainable Future Now...Watch this video below:


Promoting Sustainable Farming Practices for a Healthy Soil and Profitability! Please support us

The purpose of this project is to target 900 Ethiopian smallholder men and women farmers to increase vegetable production, to engage them in preservation to reduce post-harvest loss, and to link marketing knowledge with production decisions. This in turn will improve livelihoods, income, household nutrition, and opportunities to acquire new skills and technology.

Assessing local Food Systems: Indicators for sustainable regional food systems 

This research attempts to provide a detailed look at the local food systems in Western Nevada Counties. It applies a participatory action research method. We seek to identify and measure the local food systems collaboratively and reflectively... read more

What Northern Nevada Offers: Click here to find where to eat healthy foods or buy locally produce.

Collaborating Organizations

Thank you to all of our collaborators who have helped supporting our current project. We encourage you to check out our sustainable sharing videos and articles, research, and community initiative sustainable programs.  For any information about collaborators, please contact us

Current collaborators include:

WesternNevada Development District (WNDD)

Lattin Farms

To collaborate with NGI, Please download and complete this FORM and send us by email.

Preparing the Next Generation

By Sonja Brown,October 28, 2011

"An ancient Native America proverb says “we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors… we borrow it from our children.”

The idea of sustainable is not just an idea, it is a lifestyle, one that we must incorporate into our lives 24/7...read more

Tapping Geothermal Energy for Thermal Comfort

By Woldeab Hailezghi, Environmental Technology Research Associate, October 22, 2011
The earth's crust maintains a nearly constant temperature, between 50 and 60 °F, or 10 and 16 °C, all around the world. This natural phenomenon can be utilized to offset the mind-boggling energy consumed for conditioning .....read more