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Initial efforts have focused primarily on biofuels, solar and geothermal energy because of successful ongoing projects at campuses. For example, the Desert Research Institute, the University of Nevada, Reno and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas all have active research and development programs Converse White Sneakers

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´╗┐Green energy resources can help state achieve economic stability

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such as the Nevada Renewable Energy Consortium we can expand our technology research and development efforts and train the work force required by the business sector. In the process, we will attract more research and infrastructure support, create more jobs and strengthen Nevada's economy.

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This effort already has borne fruit. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D Nev., and state Sen. Randolph Townsend, R Reno, the consortium received a $2.5 million federal appropriation in 2009 and another $2.8 million in 2010. Current and future funding will further help university system's near term goal of increasing national renewable energy research competitiveness by fostering research collaboration through the consortium.

Rather than reinvent the wheel, we can learn from one of our neighboring states. Utah has about the same population as Nevada and a similar tax structure. However, they have devoted significantly greater resources to higher education. Currently, they have twice as many employees in higher education (not including Brigham Young University) as Nevada and have made a concerted effort to attract top talent, further enhancing recruitment efforts. This has resulted in Salt Lake City being dubbed the next Silicon Valley by Newsweek.

Nevadans used to brag about being recession proof because our major revenue producers in gaming and tourism provided a steady stream of income and allowed our state to prosper without a heavy tax burden. This low tax burden provided an incentive for businesses to relocate to Nevada, providing jobs and fueling further growth. Unfortunately, we've discovered the hard way that this does not guarantee a stable economy. Instead, Nevada has suffered as much as any state in the country.

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So, how can we recover? Given Nevada's rich abundance of geothermal, solar and Converse Laces wind resources, one suggested remedy has been to focus on green energy. To address this need, the Reno Gazette Journal and Holland Hart recently sponsored a Green Energy Forum. Panelists included representatives from business, government and education. Among the questions discussed was: What does the state Converse High Heels Wedges

Partnering with the business community is critical to the success of this effort. Solely promoting basic and applied research, however, is insufficient to achieve economic stability. We are pursuing a strong work force development program and linking with the business sector through organizations such as the Nevada Institute for Renewable Energy Commercialization. To further aid with supporting existing Nevada businesses and attracting new companies, the consortium also is providing a point of entry for renewable energy associated businesses, technical organizations and academic entities seeking partnerships with the university system.

in biofuels. UNR and UNLV are both very active in solar energy efforts focused on improving the efficiency and cost of solar energy production, as well as the use of solar energy in hybrid energy systems. DRI and UNR have been developing and refining several new methods for identifying hidden geothermal reserves. More recently, the research efforts of the consortium have expanded to include support for wind energy assessment and energy related technologies.

Nevada has begun to embark on this path. The Nevada System of Education has put in place the Nevada Renewable Energy Consortium, which includes the Desert Research Institute, the University of Nevada, Reno and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and participating community colleges. The consortium is one step in making Nevada a leader in the use of renewable energy sources to promote a cleaner environment and a more secure nation. In the process, this effort can help transform Nevada's economy by creating new technologies, spinning off startup companies and training the work force we need to attract and maintain additional businesses.

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The consortium also has developed an inventory of research capabilities, facilities, education and outreach programs in the university system in order to formulate a clear strategic plan for future growth. This will help prevent duplication while taking full advantage of collaboration and expertise within NSHE.

Alan Gertler is a research professor and the senior director of the Clean Technologies Renewable Energy Center at DRI.

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