Alex, I'm conducting technical assistance and trainings in the Gulf area and this phrase and concept has become a critical part of training in just about every conversation I have with those who are in the region. The folks on the ground are facing the lack of passive survivability everyday - they do not hesitate to get right on board with the idea they just want to do it RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE.
The desperation and immediacy to get things cleaned up and re-built and to get out of trailers or mold infested buildings is intensifying. The biggest obstacle is not a willingness to build green, energy efficient or passive but a need for knowledgable labor, and "how-to" information in the field and on the projects. There is little time or patience (anymore) to sit in a meeting or workshop or charrette many say that they don't need to be convinced they just need to do it. I am hearing frustration on the ground with the workshops and charrettes - they say it felt hopeful months ago but then there was a lack of follow up and on the ground assistance to actually get it done and they cannot wait any longer.
In the mean time it appears that large, very ungreen (almost anti green) developers are buying up significant tracks of devestated downtown lands to build multi-family housing in Mississippi - with no intention of realizing the visions of the many charrettes conducted.
If researching where to get a product or where to locate a specially skilled sub or laborer is required by the rebuilders and repairers then it is a lot less likely to happen. An owner can ask for green building or passive survivabily but each worker, builder and contractor has such a demand for their services that even the smallest request by an owner or contractor can get your project outright rejected or sent to the bottom of the pile of needy clients be it build a house or business, replace a roof, mechanical system, or remediate and repair the lower floors. Not suprisingly labor is in short supply and there is no housing to bring in more.
I guess my point is - we must keep listening carefully and asking continuously those in the thick of it what they need at each step and moment along the way in order to help rebuild their coomunities in the way both we and they know would be best. In our desire to facilitate and help we have to remain agile, flexible and adapt to their needs and obstacles of the moment which shift the instant you've helped them over one hurdle to the next hurdle that is in the path. And the hurdles are very close together and all different heights.
Thnaks again for passive survivabilty and everything else!
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