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November 8th marked one year since the Camp Fire ripped through the towns of Paradise, Magalia, and other Butte County communities. It was the deadliest and most destructive fire in California’s history, taking 85 lives, destroying nearly 19,000 structures, and ultimately charring over 240,000 square miles. Thirty thousand people lost their homes.
A year later, only 14 of the 14,000 ruined homes have been rebuilt. For the displaced residents, progress must feel painfully slow. But local leaders and community members are showing determination to rebuild more durable, resilient communities that have a better chance of surviving future fires, which are predicted to grow more extreme as California gets hotter and drier.
Build It Green would like to offer our support for the work that’s being done to rebuild stronger, safer communities. After all, for over a decade, our mission has been to “create a world of healthy and sustainable homes for all people.” With many of our GreenPoint Rated measures specifically addressing fire resiliency. To me, that means having the courage to push for new solutions, new ways of building and living, and new ways of working together.
In practical terms, we will be looking to partner with GreenPoint Raters as well as local organizations that are assisting with the rebuilding of California communities devastated by recent wildfires. Through these partnerships, we hope to facilitate free GreenPoint Ratings in 2020 for up to 100 rebuilt homes.
Interim Executive Director
Build It Green