What do you call 30-some people living in the same area? A town, a village, a hamlet? Whatever you call it, 81-year-old Gerald Freeman got it when he bought Nipton, Calif., three decades ago. Freeman’s goal is to make the community — located about an hour south of Vegas on the California–Nevada border — completely self-sustaining.
Freeman installed four solar generators in 2010, which provide half of the town’s energy. He also planted eucalyptus trees for biomass, and hopes to add a hydrogen system unless his health gets in the way (he’s been diagnosed with congestive heart and renal failures).