University Sustainability

Defining Sustainability since 1899

Energy Summit 2019 - Wednesday Tours

  • The Nexus Project

    Tour Time: 10:20am - 12:30pm
    Tour Leaders: Dr. Jeremy Ferrell and Dr. Ok-Youn Yu

    The Nexus research project at Appalachian State is committed to improving the profitability of farming in the High Country and enriching the local community through the application of biomass management, renewable energy, value-added byproducts, and season extension. This mission is supported by three major activities: Faculty and Student-led research, Community Outreach, and Technology Transfer.

    On-going research includes combined biochar with anaerobic digestion, pyrolysis of dedicated bioenergy crops, field trials with inoculated biochar, root-zone heating and cooling, and supplemental greenhouse lighting.

    For more information, visit:


  • Beech Mountain Small Wind Research and Demonstration Site

    Tour Time: 9:00am - 12:00pm
    Tour Leader: Johnny Bumgardner

    At an elevation of 5,500 ft, the Beech Mountain Small Wind Research and Demonstration Site is a unique program to give first-hand experience with wind power technology in a world-class, class 5 wind resource. Beech Mountain is the premier site in the US for research, durability testing and demonstration of small wind turbine technology. Operating as an off-campus research facility of Appstate’s Sustainable Technology & the Build Environment department, students and faculty gain experience in wind turbine and tower technology, maintenance and operation of wind turbines, and data collection and analysis.


  • Sustainable Campus Gardens at AppState

    Tour Time: 9:00am - 11:00am
    Tour Leader: Cullen Beasley

    Come explore Appalachian State’s sustainable campus gardens, blooming examples of the university’s commitment to sustainability initiatives like food security and organic practices. We will begin at the Appalachian Roots Sustainable Garden. Some features of the roots garden include a solar-powered garden shed and a solar-charging bench, terraces of perennials, a willow dome, a miniature wetland, a butterfly garden, and a beehive. Next, the tour will visit the Sustainable Development Civic Garden project, also known as the Edible Schoolyard, which is a mature garden, more than 12 years old. The SD Civic Garden includes a cob greenhouse, a solar dehydrator, composting facilities, medicinal herb gardens, and both annual and perennial vegetables.

  • AppState Compost Initiative and Facility

    Tour Time: 9:00am - 11:00am
    Tour Leader: Max Alff

    This compost tour will highlight our forced air facility and the benefits of this type of system, along with discussion of our current collection and processing system. We will also showcase some additional equipment we have purchased to support the expansion of our program, as well as discuss our intentions for future expansion.


  • Renewable Energy Initiatives Campus Systems

    Tour Time: 9:00am - 11:00am
    Tour Leaders: Jim Dees and Leila Jackson

    The Appalachian State University Renewable Energy Initiative (ASUREI) will be doing a tour of the renewable energy projects on campus. The ASUREI is a student-lead group that receives $10 in funding per year from every student at Appalachian State University. Topics to be covered on the tour will include; a brief history of the ASUREI, completed and ongoing projects, the group's project management process, various obstacles faced by the group, and a Q&A session.