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October 16, 2016 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

The California Energy Commission will require that all new non-residential buildings be zero-net energy by 2030. Although a formidable challenge, highly successful examples created by leading decision makers and design professionals already exist. In this one-day seminar, industry experts tackled a range of issues surrounding ZNE buildings: envelope, lighting and HVAC solutions; on-site vs. off-site renewables; energy storage; utility/grid interfaces; and innovative project delivery and performance verification.

Location and Registration

This event took place at the PG&E Energy Center in San Francisco, CA. It was free and open to the public, available for on-site session and by live webinar.

Speakers and Presentations

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    John Andary

    Principal, Integral Group

    John is Bioclimatic Design Leader and Principal at Integral Group where he brings over 30 years of energy-focused consulting experience to the firm. John’s work focuses on passive and climatebased architectural and engineering design solutions to improve occupant health, thermal comfort and energy efficiency in the built environment. John believes that sustainable design is an engineer’s social responsibility and has led the design of over 25 net zero energy projects that are currently in design, construction or occupied. Notably, John led the MEP Engineering and Energy Consulting teams for the Research Support Facility project at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). At 360,000 square feet, this LEED Platinum Certified facility is considered to be the largest measured and verified net zero energy building in the world. Dedicated to widespread adoption of net zero energy, John has recently been working with developers and contractors to implement net zero in the commercial building sector.

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    Cathy Higgins

    Research Director, New Buildings Institute

    Cathy Higgins is the Research Director at NBI where she works with industry partners to research and establish the market and technical basis for scaling low- and zero-energy building solutions across all building types and regions. Cathy has over 25 years in energy efficiency large-scale project management, emerging technology research, strategic planning and policy. She is currently leading work on the energy aspects of radiant systems in conjunction with UC Berkeley and working on retrofit methods for small commercial buildings. Cathy’s focus is also on market strategies to go beyond buildings to community and aggregated scale energy solutions. Cathy has been with New Buildings Institute for over 16 years with previous roles with the Oregon Municipal Energy and Conservation Agency and the Bonneville Power Administration. Her undergraduate studies were in urban and resource planning, Spanish and graduate work in energy economics. She has been a LEED-AP and recognized by APEM as the Oregon, and the National, Energy Manager of the year.

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    Charles Elay, FAIA, PE


    Charles Eley is an architect, mechanical engineer, and author with 40 years of experience in energy efficient and sustainable design. His latest book is Design Professional’s Guide to Zero Net Energy Buildings (Island Press 2016). During his career, Mr. Eley has made significant contributions to the California energy standards, ASHRAE Standard 90.1, and energy codes in Hong Kong, Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa and Australia. Mr. Eley worked as the lead consultant to the California Energy Commission to update the state energy efficiency standards for five code update cycles. He served as the founding executive director of the Collaborative for High Performance Schools, and was the technical editor of the CHPS Best Practices Manual. He has also developed a number of energy analysis software applications and has served as energy consultant for a number of landmark green buildings. Mr Eley currently writes, serves on non-profit boards, provides specialized consulting, and teaches classes on building energy efficiency and green technologies.

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    Jim Kelsey

    Principal, kW Engineering

    Jim has been in the energy efficiency business since 1989. He founded kW Engineering in 1998 in order to do the work that he loves – exploring the technical side of energy efficiency to find innovative and reliable ways to save energy. Jim has a BA in physics from Rice University and a Masters in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin. He is a licensed mechanical engineer in California and Nevada, a LEED AP, and has taught extensively on HVAC and refrigeration. His work history includes field surveys of energy use, evaluation of energy-saving projects, field measurement and verifications, and retro-commissioning. Jim is a past President of the San Francisco Bay Area Association of Energy Engineers, is a former recipient of AEE’s Energy Engineer of the year award, and has been on its board since 1999. He currently serves on ASHRAE’s Technical Committee on Systems Energy Utilization (Existing Building Energy Performance), and serves on the board of the California Energy Efficiency Industry Council.

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    Kent Peterson

    Vice President, Chief Engineer, P2S Engineering

    Kent Peterson is a leading expert on energy efficient green buildings, with more than 25 years experience in consulting engineering and building commissioning. He recently completed a project working with NIBS and US DOE to develop a common definition for Net Zero Energy Buildings. Mr. Peterson is a past ASHRAE Society President and past chair of Standard 189.1 — for the design of high-performance green buildings — an ANSI standard addressing a building’s energy efficiency, its impact on the atmosphere, and other high-performance green metrics. In 2011, he was appointed to the new Office of Federal High-Performance Green Buildings Advisory Committee for federal agencies as a representative of the engineering profession. He is active and affiliated with more than ten professional organizations and is a registered mechanical engineer in five states.

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    Tom Williard

    Principal and Co-Founder, Sage Renewables

    Tom Williard has worked in the renewable energy industry since 2001. Prior to founding Sage, Tom was a Principal at energy consulting firms Sustainergy Systems and System Design. In 2005, he co-founded Solmetric, Inc., where he was Director of Research and Development for the initial SunEye product. Tom has expertise in modeling tool development, renewable energy finance, engineering and business development and construction oversight. Previously, Tom spent twenty years in the electronics industry as a management consultant, senior technologist and senior hardware and software engineer for a number of imaging and communications companies. Tom is active in his community, and has served on several local boards and foundations. He is an avid cyclist and plays drums in several bands.



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