by Michael dEstries
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While the hype surrounding Leonardo DiCaprio’s new show Eco-Town for Discovery Channel’s upcoming Planet Green has died down over the past few months, the real work of filming the series has been ramping up. This means that the residents of Greensburg, Kansas are witnessing some real changes as the town seeks to rebuild sustainably following the deadly twister that hit last May.

Recently, a Plenty Magazine reporter visited the town and described the on-going construction and future plans being put into action. Here’s a small highlight:

So far, the plans include more than a dozen new buildings that meet the LEED standards from the US Green Building Council (USGBC). In December, Greensburg’s city council passed a resolution requiring all major city buildings attain LEED Platinum status – the USGBC’s highest standards for efficiency and sustainability – making it the first city to do so. Other businesses in town are getting in on the action, too: the General Motors dealership is rebuilding as a model green dealership to LEED-equivalent standards with support from GM headquarters; the Baptist Church is coming back LEED Platinum; a senior housing project is pursuing LEED Gold certification; so is the hospital, John Deere dealership, and banks. Plenty of local residents have caught the green building bug as well. And in perhaps the greatest irony, there’s also talk of harnessing wind power for the community’s energy needs.

The most interesting rumor? That Google is conducting feasibility studies for a wind-powered facility in the area. Might Google also decide to jump into the wind business?

No doubt, this will be a very intriguing series — rebuilding a town from the ground-up with sustainability as the core value. With Pitt’s efforts in New Orleans and DiCaprio’s push in Greensburg, we may soon have two models of efficient building and green design for other developers to model down the road.

Check out Plenty’s article for more details.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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  • Emily

    This is fantastic. I can’t wait to see the progress!

  • oakling

    So awesome. I wonder how tornadoes affect wind-powered things….