Greensburg, Kansas: What Went Wrong? A Cautionary Tale on Green Economic Development
Thursday, September 28, 2017
8 a.m. - 9:15 a.m. EDT
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With nearly $100 million in taxpayer funds, insurance proceeds and private donations, a small rural town beamed back with energy-efficient buildings, homes, and a promising future. After an EF-5 tornado obliterated Greensburg, Kansas, in 2007, the town of 800 became America’s model green city by boasting the highest concentration of LEED Platinum buildings in the country. But 10 years later, the town is now suffering a perpetual economic tornado of its own making.
The town of Greensburg, Kansas, was supposed to be the model for green economic development. After an EF-5 tornado in 2007 obliterated the small rural town, Greensburg rebuilt and boasted the highest concentration of LEED Platinum buildings in the country years later. Today, it is suffering a perpetual economic tornado of its own making. What went wrong? What lessons can we learn from it? Is green economic development an appropriate post-disaster recovery approach? All of these questions and more will be asked and answered in this presentation geared toward sustainability advocates, post-disaster recovery professionals, officials who work in rural areas, and those with little knowledge of economic development. This 10-year report card is given from an economic development and site selection perspective.
Benjamin Howell, email@example.com