Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 73.93
Liaison Jim Dees
Submission Date April 19, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Appalachian State University
IN-24: Innovation A

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
The Nexus Project

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

NEXUS is developing inexpensive and efficient biomass greenhouse-heating technologies that provide an affordable and sustainable means to improve the food-growing capacities and the standard of living for farmer communities in rural Appalachia while reducing the use of fossil fuels. This is done by using on-farm biomass resources/wastes such as wood chips, manures, and agricultural waste to produce energy through small-scale systems including pyrolysis (biochar), anaerobic digestion, and compost heating. These systems produce soil amendment co-products that become valuable farm inputs to build soil. Application of passive and active solar systems and thermal storage complement these greenhouse-heating systems.

Heated greenhouses extend the growing season, which increases the availability of local food throughout the year, expands available markets, and increases farmers’ profits. This research serves our community by enhancing access to fresh local produce, farmers by increasing their income throughout the year, and the local environment by conserving fossil-fuel energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions normally associated with greenhouse heating and transportation of non-local produce.

The Nexus team maintains and operates the “Nexus” research facility at the Watauga County landfill site and works with area farmers on design and implementation of greenhouse heating systems.

Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Public Engagement

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :
The website URL where information about the innovation is available :
Additional documentation to support the submission:

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