The Plain Talk on Quality Growth conference on March 29-20 examines issues facing East Tennessee. This is a topic that all decision makers in East Tennessee should take very seriously.
should provide a crash course for local government decision makers. A topic to the point is that of the luncheon speaker on Friday, March
30: “The critical role of local government in promoting
quality growth.” In the afternoon, some intriguing topics are discussed in four parallel panel sessions: (1) Markets, economy and development. How do local development decisions affect local government costs, community services and tax burdens. (2) Community, environment and health. How do communities deal with negative impacts on environment and public health; innovative approaches to air and water quality maintenance, sprawl, brownfields, grayfields, and preservation. (3) Transportation and land use. What are the transportation options; land use choices; impacts of growth on rural infrastructure;
rural and urban perspectives. (4) Sustainable and healthy buildings. Design innovations aimed at minimizing environmental impacts; reduction of energy consumption, utility bills
and infrastructure local costs; healthier places to live and work.
After many years of talk, the zero-energy house seems to become slowly but inevitably a more widespread reality beyond the occasional experimental example. This topic will be addressed in the pre-conference luncheon on March 29. TSK member Dr. Wolf Naegeli is program chair of this interesting and timely conference. The TSK plans future programs on related topics as a conference afterglow. For information on conference and registration go to www.ETQG.org.