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Greensburg Becomes Green Model
The city of Greensburg, Kan., has passed a resolution to certify all city-owned buildings as environmentally friendly, making it the first city in the United States to pass such a resolution, according to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
The USGBC will award the city’s buildings with a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum rating, the highest mark a building can achieve under the USGBC’s system.
Greensburg, devastated by a tornado on May 4, 2007, has focused its recovery on rebuilding as a model green community. In December 2007, the city council adopted a resolution requiring all city buildings larger than 4,000 square feet to be certified LEED Platinum and to reduce energy use by 42 percent beyond current building code requirements.
Local, state and national organizations and agencies have been instrumental in promoting green building best practices for Greensburg and helping the community plan for future generations. Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius and the U.S. Department of Agriculture support the green rebuilding effort. The U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory and its subcontractors are providing technical assistance on all aspects of energy use and building design in Greensburg.
As part of the town's Green Initiative, 10 commercial and public buildings in Greensburg already have committed to being LEED certified. This number is staggering because only six buildings have received LEED certification in the state of Kansas, and rural Greensburg had a population of only about 1,400 before the tornado.
For more information on Greensburg’s sustainable rebuilding initiative, visit www.bnim.com/greensburg