Welcome to our section theme, Citizen-Generated Ecological Improvement. As we all know, there are many ecological issues which presently trouble our planet, including energy, land, resource consumption, quality of air, etc. These problems can seem very broad with no quick or easy solutions, especially when it seems like those we elect do not seem to do anything to seriously tackle any of these issues. Sometimes the best way to fix the biggest of problems is to start small. In other words, change is best started locally. Our group has proposed the question, “Just what can a citizen do to ecologically improve Las Vegas?” What can we, as Las Vegans, do to challenge the ecological issues that trouble our city in a practical and efficient way?
Many students have written us their ideas and we’ve selected a number of them here for our class website. All of them have researched the topic at hand and have offered a variety of creative solutions, including political activism, how to find the best activist groups, listing the most recyclable materials, and finding buildings in the city that have already taken the green initiative. It is up to the citizens to get educated about environmental concerns and get involved in improving the community and environment, which is exactly what these articles will guide you to do.



Post Sources:

How To: Be the Change

Molever, J. (2012). *green van goghs. Retrieved from

*Additional environmental volunteering links: Read more of this post

Water in Las Vegas

Cameron Yana



•NY Times-



• Las Vegas Ground Water-

Water Treatment Plant Process of City of Henderson, Nevada

Maria Warren


How to Get your Party on (Conscientiously)

Lisa Goin

Social gatherings are inherent to the human race. As social creatures, we get together for a multitude of reasons, whether to ensure the well-being of the tribe or for the pleasantry of company. Uses for social congregations range from celebrating the life of the deceased, to encouraging a successful harvest. It has evolved and adapted to the moods and trends of every era of human existence. The history of “the party” includes the Last Supper, Bar Mitzvahs, weddings, balls, the French salon, speakeasies and night clubs. However, with the scientific advancements made during the last century, evidence of serious climate change and a growing consciousness of limited global resources have contributed to a new lifestyle trend: going green.


The biggest downside of throwing a party of any sort will always be the clean-up. The amount of waste created during a party is enough to make Republic Services shake their heads. This doesn’t mean that the next party you plan will be your last (you know, the funeral for your social life). All you have to do is get creative. Read more of this post

Going Green Without the Gimmicks

Rachel Hershkovitz

A pyramid, an Eiffel Tower, and a castle: it’s no surprise that many of us might describe Las Vegas architecture as gimmicky, but is it really? There’s more to Las Vegas than the Strip–something Las Vegas residents know well–and many of the city’s structures can hold their own.

Serious architecture isn’t limited to pure aesthetics. There’s been tremendous support in recent years for environmental causes, hence why the subject is common in both political and public discourse. As a result, contemporary architects must confront the critical issue of sustainability. “Going green” isn’t just a fad; it’s real and it’s here to stay, meaning that architects must take this problem into consideration if they wish to garner public support. Read more of this post

City Center

Julia Sinopoli

The strip is filled with millions of lights, shows, traffic, and people. It uses a massive amount of energy just through one night. There is a new trend of going green. Las Vegas is following this trend and has opened City Center. City Center consists of Aria Hotel and Casino, Mandarin Oriental, Vdara Hotel and Spa, Crystals, and Veer Towers. The newest attraction to the Las Vegas Strip is very sleek and sophisticated, which is very popular with the tourists and even Las Vegas locals. This group of buildings has achieved LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. According to the website, “CityCenter is the world’s largest environmentally sustainable, mixed-use new construction development to achieve LEED certification.” City Center has figured out a way to conserve energy, but still attract tourists with its glitz and glam. Read more of this post