For Thanksgiving, I returned to my original home, Kansas, fully expecting to take a break from green building. Turns out, green building was waiting for me in Kansas as well.
On the Saturday evening following Thanksgiving, I attended my high school reunion. Just like any other reunion, my classmates and I discussed our jobs and what we were up to. The responses amazed me. One person told me about her parents roofing business in Kansas that was now preparing to install solar panels throughout Kansas. She and I agreed that as soon as Kansas implemented incentives for solar panels, the business would take off.
Another former classmate explained how he designs "green" acoustics for LEED certified schools. I was amazed to learn that there is already one LEED certified high school
, Staley High School, in the Kansas City area. Finally, I spoke to another former peer who is involved with sustainable finance.
As if that was not enough, I woke up Sunday morning and read yet another article
about the green building revival of Greensburg, Kansas. The article sums up the story of how Greensburg rebuilt itself "green" after a devestating tornado and what the Greensburg example means for the rest of the country:
America can learn a lesson from the recovery of Greensburg, Kan., and two men from Lawrence plan a cross-country tour to spread the town’s “green” gospel.
“I look at Greensburg as a sort of experiment for the entire country,” Fraga said. “It can be a template for all of rural America, proof that these little towns don’t just have to fade away.”
While cities like Washington, D.C. and New York City have enacted sweeping green building regulations, much of the country is still learning about green building strategies. Based on my experiences in Kansas over the Thanksgiving holiday, I am confident that the rest of the country is well on its way to embracing green building in 2009.
Photo Credit: Hometown Invasion Tour