Is Resilience the New Sustainability? Part 3

Some construction industry experts have called resilience the new sustainability. But is that really the case?

In Part 1 of this five-part article, we discussed the importance of a building’s longevity, environmental factors, and the idea of cities as systems. In Part 2, we covered the first five of the ten resilient design principles provided by the Resilient Design Institute. Today, our Tallahassee construction lawyers will go over the remaining five principles. In Part 4 and Part 5, we will examine some common natural disasters and the resilient design strategies that can help protect against them.

Resilient Design Principles

The Resilient Design Institute provides a list of principles which comprise the idea of resilient design. The last five principles are as follows:

Locally Available, Renewable, or Reclaimed Resources are More Resilient

Nonrenewable resources and resources that need to be imported are less resilient than abundant local resources such as annually replenished groundwater, local food, and solar energy. When planning and building a resilient structure or community, these are all critical topics to keep in mind from the beginning.

Resilience Anticipates Interruptions and a Dynamic Future

Resilient design takes into account modern day human threats such as terrorism and cyberterrorism. It seeks to protect against changing climate issues such as the following:

  • Drought
  • Flooding
  • Higher temperatures
  • More intense storms
  • Rising sea levels
  • Wildfires

Resilient design also anticipates natural disasters that are unrelated to the climate, such as earthquakes and solar flares.

Find and Promote Resilience in Nature

Since renewable resources are a part of resilience, it is important to protect the environment. This enhances resilience for all living systems.

Furthermore, nature is resilient in and of itself. We can achieve greater resilience by applying certain lessons from nature to our own building endeavors.

Social Equity and Community Contribute to Resilience

In a time of crisis or rebuilding, the social aspect of resilience is critical. Communities in which people respect and care for one another will fare better during turbulent, stressful, or tragic times.

Resilience Is Not Absolute

It is important for construction professionals to recognize that resilient strategies can be implemented in incremental steps. Focus on what is feasible in the near future while also working toward more challenging long-term goals. Also, remember that total and complete resilience in the face of any situation is not possible.

If you would like to speak with a Tallahassee construction lawyer, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

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