Greensburg, Kan. Puts Green in Tornado Recovery Effort
Officials from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the city of Greensburg, Kan. and the Kansas Building Industry Association (KBIA) have announced the launch of the Greensburg GreenHome residential green building program.
As the community continues to rebuild in the aftermath of natural devastation, the voluntary program will train workers to build new homes that can be certified to the recently released National Green Building Standard.
Two years ago, a tornado that swept through the southwest Kansas town brought winds at speeds of up to 205 miles per hour, destroying 95% of the existing homes and damaging the few that were left.
The green building initiative was unveiled as city leaders and local builders celebrated the Greensburg Second Anniversary Weekend.
“Greensburg GreenHome is a very important step for all of you, but it’s also an important step for the entire nation,” said NAHB Chairman Joe Robson.
“We’re thrilled that because of these collaborative efforts and the citizens’ enthusiasm for a green future, Greensburg is emerging as a true leader in sustainable community development,” said KBIA Executive Director Chris Wilson.
“By providing technical assistance and brokering this partnership with KBIA, the U.S. Department of Energy and NREL have helped to ensure that Greensburg will continue on a green and sustainable path,” said Steve Hewitt, Greensburg city administrator.
Under the agreement announced on Friday:
- Greensburg and KBIA will work together to ensure the use of the National Green Building Standard for residential construction and completed homes certified by the NAHB Research Center — the certification agents for the NAHB National Green Building Program — or NAHBGreen.
- KBIA will offer Certified Green Professional Designation training, including the two-day Green Building for Building Professionals course and the one-day Business Management for Building Professionals course.
- KBIA will waive the state and local association fees for any Greensburg home that achieves NAHBGreen certification.
“This agreement shows the city and Greensburg residents that the National Association of Home Builders, through KBIA, is committed to making a long-term investment in Greensburg’s future,” said Robson.
With support from the U.S. Department of Energy, NREL brought in a team almost immediately after the May 2007 tornado to provide consultants with technical expertise in buildings, wind energy, solar energy, biomass use and alternative transportation. NREL’s efforts in Greensburg will be used as a model for other communities seeking to rebuild.
“NREL is honored to be working shoulder to shoulder with citizens of Greensburg as they re-build their city with high energy-efficiency standards and sustainable building designs,” said Senior Project Leader Lynn Billman. “Greensburg is showing other small communities across America that they can save energy and be green as well.”
For more information, visit Building Greensburg on the Web.
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‘Profit from Building Green’ Available at BuilderBooks.com
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