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Rebuilding Haiti Green

May 18, 2010

It’s been months since a 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated the country of Haiti, but it will take years before Haitians’ lives can return to normalcy. Efforts to rebuild the nation have continued nonstop since the catastrophe in January, and many are determined to make Haiti a better and more resistant place than it ever was. One of the ways activists plan to do that is through the “Green” effort.

Haiti ambassador Raymond Joseph was back in town for the 50th class reunion after graduating from Wheaton College in 1960, May 8 in Chicago. At the reunion he spoke with reporters and Chicago citizens about how Haiti plans to get the job done. According to an article in the Daily Herald, the only thing that gave Joseph any hope after the earthquake was “when he noticed that traffic lights in the Haiti capital of Port-au-Prince were still working because they were solar powered…Right then and there, I said ‘Haiti has to go green,'” Joseph said. “We’re going to harness the sun and harness the wind to energize Haiti.”

With the help of the international community pledging $5.3 billion over the next two years, the ambassador is confident that Haiti will thrive again. It’s almost like a clean slate – a chance to makeover a nation knowing how important preserving the natural earth can be. According to the article of the Daily Herald written by Robert Sanchez, Raymond Joseph said, “It took an earthquake to finally put Haiti on the map and for people to learn about this little country that we all keep calling the poorest in the Western Hemisphere.”

Another article from Change.org describes the same eco-friendly rebuilding goals that Haiti’s ambassador is working toward. According to Nikki Gloudeman, a writer for Change.org, several organizations have committed to rebuild the country green after the initial recovery stage is complete. The U.S. Green Building Council is partnering with Habitat for Humanity and other groups to rebuild Haiti. Global Green and its partner organization in the U.S., Green Cross, have also stated they would like to help rebuild Haiti green.

Do you have any good ideas for how to make Haiti a more “Green-Friendly” place? Let us know! We’d love to hear your comments.

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