Home Efficiency Forum 2019 Recap


Listed below are the available resources from sessions presented at Home Efficiency Forum 2019.

    • Grid Re-Engineering

      Speakers

      • Sandy Lawrence, Energy and Resilience Educator | View Bio
      • Sandy Lawrence

        Energy and Resilience Educator

        Sessions to be presented:

        Sandy Lawrence is a retired physician and former associate professor of medicine from California. He has been interested in environmental issues since at least his undergraduate days and gave his first public presentation on energy issues—a lecture on nuclear power and weapons—while still a family medicine resident in San Francisco. Sandy and his wife live north of Bellingham in a Passivhaus-certified home completed in 2019. He drives a pure electric vehicle or PEV, and his wife a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle or PHEV. Both are largely charged from of a pair of solar arrays. They share their five acres with goats, chickens and sometimes grandchildren.

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      The model that the electric utility industry has followed for over a century is being radically revised. Implications of the disaggregation of vertically-integrated utilities into the 3 separate levels of generation, long-distance transmission and local distribution are not yet adequately understood or appreciated by builders and consumers. Some 60 percent of generators now face a competitive environment, with the necessity of bidding into day-ahead, hour-ahead, even 5 minute-ahead auctions for supplying power. For 3/4 of coal-burning generators, immediate replacement with wind or solar is already economically rational. On the individual residential + commercial level, distributed renewable energy + on-site storage represent incredible opportunities, as well as ancillary support of grid services.

      Top 10 Best Practices for Today’s Homebuilder

      Speakers

      • John Spillman, Trainer, Earth Advantage | View Bio
      • John Spillman

        Earth Advantage | Trainer

        John is a trainer and senior technical consultant with Earth Advantage, a BetterBuiltNW program implementer. He regularly teaches classes to Energy Raters, Builders, Architects/Designers, Real Estate Professionals and Building Code Officials. John has been promoting sustainable building and energy efficiency in both new and existing residential construction with Earth Advantage since 2009. John’s construction background is in residential remodeling. He is currently a certified building analyst professional with the Building Performance Institute, and a LEED for Homes Green Rater. John earned a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from University of California, Davis.

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      There are many paths to building  high-performance homes and it can be difficult to choose the set of features that best fit a given situation. To help builders and raters make informed decisions on how to increase building performance, BetterBuiltNW offers a version of this session as a full-day training that provides the latest and greatest approaches along a continuum of “Good, Better & Best” practices being used today to build energy efficient homes.

      Join us for this session to gain an overview of all the techniques and technologies from the “Best” category (in other words, Zero-Energy home building), as well as learn how this training and others provided by BBNW can be leveraged across the NW to accelerate the adoption of energy efficient building practices and utility program participation.

      ICC/ANSI/RESNET 380 Testing Standards

      Speakers

      • Jonathan P Jones, Director of Building Sciences, Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities | View Bio
      • Jonathan P Jones

        Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities | Director of Building Sciences

        Sessions to be presented:

        Jonathan P Jones is currently the Director of Building Sciences for the Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities. Jonathan has worked in the residential real estate industry for 16 years, gaining experience as an appraiser, Broker®, builder and verifier. In his current position, Jonathan is responsible for: governmental affairs regarding construction regulation, administration of the WA state Built Green® program, consulting and advocating for builders with the local building officials, and educational outreach. Other services provided by Jonathan’s department include: construction consulting, energy modeling and verification, and energy code compliance testing (both residential and commercial). More recently Jonathan has added performing third party QA work as a register RESNET QAD and is in the process of completing the Rater Trainer requirement.

      • Miguel Rodriguez

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      This class will cover the standards for testing homes both advanced and for code. This will cover the use of time stamped and geo-stamped testing software.

      The 2020 NGBS: The Path Toward More Sustainable Housing

      Speakers

      • Michelle Foster, VP Innovation Services, Home Innovation Research Labs | View Bio
      • Michelle Foster

        Home Innovation Research Labs | VP Innovation Services

        You can usually find Michelle on the road promoting the benefits of NGBS Green, Home Innovation’s building certification program based on the ANSI-approved National Green Building Standard ICC/ASHRAE -700. Previously, Michelle led Fannie Mae’s High-Performance Housing Initiative, where she developed the smart commute mortgage, revamped the energy efficient mortgage, and developed a methodology to calculate the carbon reduction from efficient homes so that they could be sold on the emerging greenhouse gas market. When she is home, she is leading the Friends of Forest Glen and Montgomery Hills to redesign her neighborhood to be more walkable, bikeable and transit accessible. Finding solutions to community and environmental issues all stemmed from her University of Virginia training as an urban planner and her time studying environmental issues at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

      • Jerud Martin, Co-owner/Custom Home Director, Urban NW Homes | View Bio
      • Jerud Martin

        Urban NW Homes | Co-owner/Custom Home Director

        Growing up the oldest son of a general contractor, Jerud’s interest in the building and construction industry was sparked at an early age—back when he used to accompany his dad to jobsites and straighten nails for a penny each. That spark ignited a passion for home building, as well as a desire to seek out responsible building practices. Today, he sits as Vice Chair of the Clark County Green Building Council and is co-owner of leading residential green builder, Urban Northwest Homes, in Vancouver, WA. As Urban Northwest’s Custom Homes Director, Jerud is committed to building every home—no matter the price point—to a National Green Building Standard (NGBS) level. With nearly two decades of industry experience, a handful of Net Zero home builds, and over 400 NGBS-certified homes built to date, Jerud’s mission is to continue to push the local market in building high performing, healthy and sustainable homes. He holds true to the belief that being a responsible builder will ensure a sustainable and healthy future for our current generation and generations to come.

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      Until the National Green Building ICC/ASHRAE – 700 was developed, residential buildings lagged the green certification market because the margins are small, the returns are not enough to support certain green practices, and the cost/benefit analysis is different than for commercial buildings. Now, homes and multifamily buildings are seeking NGBS Green certification in record numbers because it offers a flexible, rigorous, and affordable rating system. The NGBS establishes practices for the design, construction, and renovation of green residential buildings and land developments.

      Manual R - "R" is for Rightsizing!

      Speakers

      • Greg Davenport, Mitsubishi Electric | View Bio
      • Greg Davenport graduated from the University of Puget Sound and lives in the Seattle, Washington area. He works with high-performance builders in the Pacific Northwest. For more than six years, he worked with CLEAResult in the Northwest Washington region on a Joint Utility ENERGY STAR® Lighting program that targeted the single-family and multifamily residential markets. In early 2014, Greg worked on a NEEA High Performance Home Specification pilot program designed to help builders embrace net-zero-ready building practices. Greg was in Nepal when the 2015 earthquake occurred, and he stayed on to do volunteer service work, including a nonprofit contract project until early 2016. In 2016, Greg joined the Performance Construction Team at Mitsubishi Electric, which promotes energy-efficient mini-split systems to the high-performance residential construction market around the country.

      • Ryan Nieto, Green Canopy | View Bio
      • Ryan Nieto

        Green Canopy

        Sessions to be presented:

        Ryan has spent the last 10 years developing and applying his mechanical skills and systems driven thought process to the world of residential construction. Armed with a keen eye, knowledge of air movement, thermal transfer and building science, Ryan is now building processes and programs that allow Green Canopy to systematically fight the war against unintended air infiltration and heat loss within their homes. His love for the outdoors and mountain air drives him to inspire others to build homes that are healthy for both people and the environment.

      • Ingo Stroup, Building Energy | View Bio
      • Ingo Stroup

        Building Energy

        Sessions to be presented:

        Ingo Stroup is the founder and president of Building Energy, Inc., a RESNET rating provider/QA company located in Idaho. With almost 40 years of building science knowledge gained by practical, boots-on-the-ground education, he has become one of the leading experts in home performance. Ingo has rated over 5,000 homes in his career. As a RESNET Quality Assurance Designee, he is charged with ensuring that the methods, processes and reporting meet or exceed the standard requirements. Building Energy provides energy services that include Manual J HVAC load calculations for building contractors and HVAC companies throughout the Northwest.

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      Modern homes in North America are getting smaller and building codes are constantly improving. These trends are leading to low-load homes that require smaller better designed HVAC systems. Oversized heating and cooling systems perform poorly in terms of energy use and comfort. ACCA, HVAC contractors, and high performance builders struggle to find good HVAC strategies for low load homes. Some examples of poor HVAC design for low-load homes include:
      -HVAC contractors who do not do accurate Manual J load calculations and hedge their bets with oversized equipment.
      - HVAC contractors who try to put wall-hung heads in every room for distribution with mini-split systems.
      - Two- and three-story homes with comfort problems due to stack effect and poor HVAC design.
      - Oversized multi zone mini split systems which perform poorly in the shoulder season.
      - Gas furnaces which are oversized for high performance homes and short cycle in shoulder season.

      In this presentation, we will look at the challenges and solutions for good HVAC design, primarily with mini-split systems, in low-load homes. 

      Accurately Size Your HVAC in 15 Minutes

      Speakers

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      Attendees will learn how to use a free online HVAC Sizing Tool to generate quick load calculations and duct designs for residential and small commercial buildings. 

      Providing Energy Consultation to Builders: An Open Discussion on the value of Design Charrettes

      Speakers

      • Ryan Clemmer, HVAC Contractor and Builder, Evergreen | View Bio
      • Ryan Clemmer

        Evergreen | HVAC Contractor and Builder

        A native to San Diego, California, Ryan grew up in the “sunshine state” sailing, rock climbing, and surfing.  As an Oregon resident, his passion for outdoor adventure is fueled by what the Northwest has to offer. A builder by trade, Ryan carved out a niche in the industry in the Eugene area, where he was owner/builder of Ryan Clemmer Construction for eight years. Ryan’s building style is inspired by old timber-framing techniques with a craftsman finish. With a passion for energy efficiency, he turned his focus to work and support the efforts of Portland’s Clean Energy Works program. In 2019 Ryan joined forces with Tom Sorensen, another like-minded energy efficiency geek and mechanical contracting mind, to start Evergreen Building Systems. Ryan and Tom focus their work on quality designed mechanical installations for the residential and small commercial customer. With the relationships he’s built with builders in the Northwest and his passion to create value, he’s driven to build a business that bring together a science- based approach to solving problems with quality, long-lasting installations.

      • Greg Lasher, Residential Energy Efficiency Field Specialist, TRC | View Bio
      • Greg Lasher

        TRC | Residential Energy Efficiency Field Specialist

        As a Residential Energy Efficiency Field Specialist for TRC, Greg promotes energy programs and maintains relationships with builders, verifiers, contractors, and suppliers. He provides design assistance, program management, and technical building science guidance for new construction building. Greg has over 25 years of experience leading and managing projects and people in both the private and public sectors. He has worked for construction companies in the role of Building Analyst and General Manager conducting Home Performance Audits, modeling energy efficiency, cost estimating, and managing the sales and operations of a construction business. Among his specialties are blower door testing, combustion analysis, HVAC and duct design and testing, high efficiency domestic hot water systems, insulation, moisture remediation, indoor air quality, seismic retrofitting, and efficient lighting.

      • Tony Marnella, Marnella Homes | View Bio
      • Tony Marnella, of Marnella Homes, is a lifelong resident of the Northwest. He is a licensed real estate broker with over 33 years of experience and has over 23 years of building experience in both Oregon and Washington. His experience ranges from land development, condominiums and townhomes to ADUs and large custom homes. He began implementation of green practices in 2004 and hasn’t looked back, now building 100% of his projects certified through NGBS.

        Tony sits on the national advisory committee for NGBS and chairs their local NW Climate Committee and is also a member of the HBA’s Home Performance Council. He has been awarded for the performance of his homes and his continued achievements in green building by Northwest ENERGY STAR®, the HBA Excellence Award, Earth Advantage and their Hall of Fame Award and recently the NGBS Partner of Excellence.

      • Tyler Moffet, Moffet Energy Modeling | View Bio
      • Tyler Moffet began developing an interest in efficient building design as an intern at an HVAC consulting firm, later achieving a Master of Science degree in renewable energy engineering with a focus on efficient building design. Tyler spent considerable time developing an expertise in energy modeling, then using it as a tool to achieve energy goals in buildings. He has brought these methods to the building design industry to assist in the development of energy efficient homes and buildings.

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      Design charettes have been in use for decades but are underutilized in the PNW single-family new construction industry. In this session, we will explore how collaborative design meetings can spark innovation and prevent mistakes when building for higher efficiency. We will consider questions like: Do design charettes really work? Do they present an opportunity to expand a verifier's business? Are charrettes well suited to the way homes are built or are they too formal? We will hear from verifiers who have become trusted energy consultants by implementing design charrettes to strengthen their relationships with builders. Builders and HVAC designers who have embraced design charrettes will share their thoughts on the value of inclusive design.

      Rater Panel: A Platform for a Valuable Voice

      Speakers

      • Elizabeth Coe, Ecoe Company | View Bio
      • Elizabeth Coe

        Ecoe Company

        Elizabeth Coe is a certified Home Energy Rater and Sustainable Building Advisor with 15 years of experience in the residential building industry. Eight years ago, Elizabeth started Ecoe Company and now considers herself fortunate to work with great builders as a Rater/Verifier and building science consultant on some of the coolest high-performance and net-zero energy homes being built in Western Washington. She enjoys being in the "spreadsheet zone" working on energy models, but her favorite times are in the field doing site inspections and blower door tests. Elizabeth designed and helped to build her own high-performance home where she lives with her husband, two teenagers and two big dogs.

      • Jacob Hooper, Swiftsure Energy Services | View Bio
      • Jacob Hooper

        Swiftsure Energy Services

        Jacob Hooper is a RESNET Rater at Swiftsure Energy Services, where he serves as a third-party verifier, green-building expert, and ICC Plans Examiner. In addition to conducting HERS and EPS ratings, Jacob also certifies for the ENERGY STAR®, and is accredited with Home Innovation Research Labs to verify for the 2012/2015 National Green Building Standard (NGBS) where he has nearly 300 homes certified or currently seeking a certification of silver or higher. In his spare time, Jacob spends time with his family in Longview. He likes to go rock climbing, mountain biking, white water rafting, and camping when he's not being kept busy with his hobby and love for Dungeons and Dragons.

      • Megan Kramer, Megan Kramer Consulting | View Bio
      • Megan Kramer

        Megan Kramer Consulting

        Megan Kramer is a Home Energy Rater based in central Washington. She verifies new homes for ENERGY STAR®, Built Green and several high-performance homes rebate programs. After earning her master’s degree in green design at Carnegie Mellon University, Megan spent several years in Central Oregon representing Energy Trust of Oregon, working in the HVAC industry and managing a community action agency weatherization program.

      • Ron Nardozza, Four Walls | View Bio
      • Ron Nardozza is the founder and president of Four Walls Inc, a small local company engaged in energy efficiency ratings, testing and consulting for ENERGY STAR®, Energy Trust of Oregon (EPS), HERS and related programs in residential, multi-family and small commercial construction. He brings over four decades of residential construction experience to the table and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business and construction from the University of Oregon. Four Walls Inc is engaged in projects throughout NW Oregon and SW Washington.

      • Lori Sanders, Energy Incentives and PUD Commissioner | View Bio
      • Lori Sanders

        Energy Incentives and PUD Commissioner

        Lori Sanders is currently the owner of Energy Incentives, INC. Located in the Tri-Cities, she enjoys long-term business relationships with outstanding builders and industry leaders. Lori’s company has been awarded ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year in both 2017 and 2018. She operates in both the residential and commercial spaces to assist builders in code compliance, building science, and optimizing utility rebates. Lori’s passion for all things energy led her to run for public office as a PUD Commissioner — a role in which she has successfully served for 14 years. Lori has also served on the Executive Board of Energy Northwest, a joint action agency that provides carbon-free nuclear, solar, wind, and hydro generation. She is an advocate for affordable housing and volunteers in a charity that provides clean water to third-world countries. Stay tuned to hear Lori’s unique perspective on how to add value and better serve our customers.

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      Regional raters and verifiers are our industry's “boots on the ground,” and play an integral role at the nexus between programs, energy efficiency, and builders. Their insights are invaluable for emerging trends, builder pain-points, market barriers, and overall success of utility programs. Their voices must be heard as programs and building practices evolve to help better adapt to a changing housing market. This session will serve as a panel discussion with raters and verifiers providing feedback and discussion to questions ranging from recipes for a successful strategy, biggest hurdles with builders, barriers in the rating business, ideas on how we push to the next level of building, and feedback on how programs can better suit the needs of the industry.

      Beyond Code Points: Creating Lasting Success with Heat Pump Water Heaters

      Speakers

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      Presentation Slides 7 B Hpwh

      HPWHs are making inroads into new construction installations. State code and new homes' energy-efficient programs make HPWHs an attractive option for builders. In order to guarantee energy savings are maximized and customers are satisfied with the units, HPWHs must be sized correctly, installed according to code/ install specifications, commissioned in a manner assuring persistent savings, deliver hot water when required and, finally, the homebuyer must be educated regarding product attributes such as filter cleaning. This session will focus on how builders, verifiers and installers can maximize success with HPWHs by following simple design and install protocols.

      Today’s Passive Buildings - A Better Value for Utilities, Raters, and Developers

      Speakers

      • Tad Everhart, President, CertiPHIers Cooperative | View Bio
      • Tad Everhart

        CertiPHIers Cooperative | President

        Tad Everhart is a Passive House Institute-accredited building Certifier at CertiPHIers Cooperative, helps publish Passive House books and Passive House Buildings magazine, and curates Apogee Passive House Products Marketplace, a free online catalog of 450+ high-performance, Passive House products in 60+ categories.   Tad has written multiple articles on high-performance building materials and factory-assisted Passive House development. Tad helped design and build 40 homes in Portland in the 1990s including his family’s home which they retrofitted into a Passive House beginning in 2009, reducing overall energy consumption by over 50% and heating energy demand by 75%. Tad served on the boards of Passive House Northwest and the Passive House Institute U.S.  Tad has presented multiple times at EEBA, ACI, Passive House Northwest, Passive House California, PHIUS, and North American Passive House Network conferences.

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      Once considered just the “left wing of building energy efficiency geeks,” Passive House is far more useful today for utilities, raters, and developers. First, the new Primary Energy Renewable (PER) metric rates the building EUI from the utility’s point of view. Making the rating far more valuable. PER models building energy consumption for the 100% renewably-powered future grid that will power buildings for most of their lifetimes. PER not only accounts for the nonsynchronous renewable generation and building load, but it does so for each application of power in the building. Every load has a distinct, measurable relationship to renewable power and includes the dimension of building location—what renewably-generated power is available in a particular region at particular times. 

      Designing With Dettson: A Verifier’s Experience in Design and Installing a Correctly Sized, Modulating Gas Furnace

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      Presentation Slides 9 B Designing With Dettson

      The majority of new homes built in the Northwest are heated by natural gas. The typical gas furnace is oversized by a factor of two or three. Finding systems that are appropriately designed for low load is difficult. This leads to issues with short cycling, thermal stratification and swings in indoor temperature. This session will focus on the technical aspects of designing and installing a low-load modulating gas furnace as well as the experience of a seasoned verifier that installed one in their own low-load home.

      Smart Home Energy Management Systems: Past, Present, and Future

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      Learn about the benefits of smart home energy management systems (SHEMS) to consumers. Discover the challenges inherent in smart home approaches and understand the opportunities for above-code new homes presented by smart home products.

      Checking Your Work: Properly Installed HVAC in High-Performance Homes

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      Many air conditioners and heat pumps are installed with faults that impact both their performance and efficiency. Come to this session to learn about a new RESNET/ACCA/ANSI standard with three simple field tests that can help a builder ensure they’re getting what they’ve paid for. Not only can this make for happier homeowners, fewer service calls, and lower utility bills, it can also unlock new points for homes with a HERS/ERI rating.

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