Greening Buildings, from the Empire State to the Sunflower State

Greening Buildings, from the Empire State to the Sunflower State

First up this week: How does a Midwest town recover from a devastating tornado? When that town is Greensburg, Kansas, it returns to its pioneer roots and rebuilds sustainably. Correspondent Lee Patrick Sullivan looks at how Greensburg residents used the destruction of their own as an opportunity to literally live up to the town's name.

Next, Greensburg, Kansas, used a moment of tragedy to become an icon of efficiency. But what will it take for other cities to go green? Can citizens be motivated to make efficiency upgrades without disaster? Anchor Thalia Assuras joins Robert Bryce, Senior Fellow at The Manhattan Institute, and Matt Petersen, President and CEO of Global Green USA, to discuss the potential opportunities and pitfalls of energy efficient building, and debate what it will take for American cities to become more sustainable.

Then, in this week's energyNOW! Hot Zone, Japan is building a sustainable smart town. The Fujisawa SST is set to open in 2014, about 30 miles from Tokyo. It's 10,000 home will be powered by pre-installed solar and battery systems and public buildings will have similar power systems. Residents will use or share electric vehicles and bicycles for transportation. Carbon emissions from the town are supposed to be 70 percent lower than 1990 levels. The cost for the whole project is about $741 million.

This week's energyTHEN takes us back to 1979, when screen legend Gregory Peck starred in a film from the Alliance to Save Energy, urging Americans to be more efficient. The film was made at the time of the Iranian hostage crisis, when the price of oil more than doubled in two years, sending shockwaves through the U.S. economy. Peck warns the audience that the amount of energy the U.S. wasted in the previous year equaled all the oil it imported.

Finally, One of New York City's biggest landmarks is becoming one of its greenest. The Empire State Building, which was once the world's tallest, is completing a 5-year, $500 million makeover that will make it a leader in energy efficiency. Special Correspondent Josh Zepps gives us the top-to-bottom details, including its heating and cooling system, lights, windows and elevators.