October 14 – October 15, 2020 10 am - 12 pm PDT

Building decarbonization has emerged as a key topic with a focus on building electrification. This seminar outlined the policy progress to date, the push from local jurisdictions for electrification, and state and national decarbonization strategies. Experts provided a deep dive on technologies that deliver efficient and reliable electrification for both new construction and retrofits of non-residential buildings. They discussed the solutions for electrifying challenging loads such as commercial kitchens, central domestic hot water systems, and large thermal plants. Because electrification is not the sole solution, speakers explored how grid-harmonized buildings can serve as beneficial resources to utilize renewable power when it’s available. Speakers are experts in energy storage, renewable energy production, and real-time carbon accounting of electrical supply. Participants engaged over two mornings with our panelists to learn, interact and ask questions to inform their own decarbonization work.

This event was hosted by the ASHRAE Golden Gate Chapter, PG&E and the Center for the Built Environment (CBE).

View the detailed agenda for speaker times and topics (PDF)

Speakers and Presentations

  • merrian-borgeson

    Merrian Borgeson

    Senior Scientist, Climate & Clean Energy Program, NRDC

    Presentation: Decarbonizing Buildings

    Merrian Borgeson champions stronger climate policies by providing analysis and strategic guidance to help us shift to efficient, renewable energy. She works closely with policymakers and stakeholders at the state, regional and national levels. Prior to joining NRDC, Merrian worked as a team leader at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory on energy efficiency, financing, and deployment of Recovery Act funding. Merrian holds a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University, a master’s from UC, Berkeley’s Energy and Resources Group; and an MBA from Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. She is based in San Francisco.

  • andy-brooks

    Andy Brooks

    Director of West Coast Operations, Association for Energy Affordability (AEA)

    Presentation: Central Heat Pump Water Heating: Key Design Considerations

    Andy leads a team of dedicated energy analysts and engineers who are committed to improving building performance and efficiency through applied building science and sound engineering. He has dedicated his career to bringing efficiency and clean energy to underserved communities through innovative programs, research, and demonstration projects aimed at scaling affordable housing retrofits. Andy has specialized expertise in M&V, mechanical system retrofits construction oversight and energy audits of multifamily and commercial buildings. He is also a lead instructor and curriculum developer for a variety of AEA’s training courses.

  • steve-guttmann

    Steve Guttmann

    Principal, Guttmann & Blaevoet Consulting Engineers

    Presentation: Electrification and Rapid Decarbonization Technology and Practice

    Steve Guttmann has more than two decades of leadership in integrated building design, energy conservation, and sustainable and healthy building design, he has been a Principal at G&B since 1991. Steve has extensive experience in the energy analysis, design and construction of complex projects, including higher education facilities, libraries, hospitals and medical centers, laboratories, museums and aquariums, and performing arts/media facilities. Steve serves on national committees that developed guidelines and best practices for sustainability in our nation’s healthcare facilities.

  • henry-richardson

    Henry Richardson

    Analyst, WattTime

    Presentation: Building Energy Models and Emissions

    Henry helps WattTime’s partners and collaborators understand how they can affect the electric grid and achieve the greatest reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, whether through location-based renewables siting or automated emissions reductions. Henry specializes in building performance, including emissions-focused load shifting, energy storage integration, and methods for assessing overall building emissions.

  • amy-rider

    Amy Rider

    Principal Consultant, Archamy Consulting

    Presentation: Building Decarbonization Codes

    Amy Rider is the Local Government and Policy Lead for the Building Decarbonization Coalition. She has held positions with local government agencies and consulting firms for more than 15 years, working to optimize local climate change response through education, behavior change and technology implementation. Amy also works to capture, simplify and share best management practices across the energy efficiency, resilient design, and green building space.

  • Stet-Sanborn

    Stet Sanborn

    Principal and Engineering Group Lead, SmithGroup

    Presentation: Electrification and Rapid Decarbonization Technology and Practice

    An award-winning designer with a background in both engineering and architecture, Stet focuses on the integration of high performance building enclosures with advanced building systems. He is a leading voice in statewide decarbonization efforts, net-zero energy design and research into transformational technology allowing for grid optimization and electrification. He has recently been supporting the City of Berkeley’s natural gas ban ordinance community outreach workshops, and currently serves on the San Francisco Mayor’s taskforce on decarbonization.

  • tom-williard

    Tom Williard

    Principal and CEO, Sage Energy Consulting

    Presentation: Solar + Solar and Resiliency

    Tom Williard has over 18 years of experience as a professional energy consultant and has served as CEO since Sage’s inception. He provides financial, policy, and technical oversight for company projects, and expert testimony for clients and industry groups. He is primary author of Sage’s proprietary technical and financial modeling tools. Tom has co-founded several companies in the advanced energy space including Solmetric (maker of the SunEye), SolEd (energy project finance for schools), and System Design. Before entering the energy industry, Tom spent 20 years in hardware and software engineering, engineering management, and management consulting.

  • richard-young

    Richard Young

    Director, Food Service Technology Center (FSTC), Frontier Energy, Inc.

    Presentation: Electrification of Commercial Kitchens

    Richard is the director at FSTC, an unbiased commercial food service research-and-training facility operated by Frontier Energy. Richard focuses most of his efforts on translating Frontier’s 32 years of food service research into practical information. He has created and delivered over 1000 presentations and classes and authored numerous research reports and articles in magazines, newsletters, and on the web. He is also the creator and author of the online Foodservice Energy Efficiency Expert (Fe3) training and certification program. Richard has lectured at UC Berkeley and UC Davis, and taught a food service sustainability class at Diablo Valley College.

Continuing Education

This program is qualified for AIA CES learning units with HSW.

  1. Participants will gain an understanding of emerging trends in the electrification of building systems, and be able to name several key factors that shape engineering and design of these systems.
  2. Participants will learn from case studies of central heat pump water heating and electrification of commercial kitchens in non-residential buildings, and they will learn where detailed information on these topics are available.
  3. Participants will gain an understanding of solar and battery storage considerations for grid harmonization, and how these can reduce and shift peak loads, reduce energy costs and increase resiliency.
  4. Participants will be able to reference key aspects of emerging energy policies and 2022 code developments that are advancing a shift towards building electrification.
  5. Participants will learn to apply the concept of carbon accounting for the electric grid in real time, and understand key benefits of this approach for non-residential buildings.



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