BuildingEnergy Boston 2021 Conference Sessions

✱ Standards in Action (e.g., LBC, Net Zero, PH)
Wednesday, May 5, 2021 - 10:30am to 11:30am
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Light + Justice
We begin with this simple premise: everyone deserves quality light (and dark). 
We continue with this reality: whether your home, workplace and neighborhood are well lighted depends on your social, economic, and... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Cities, Communities, Place

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 8:00am to 9:00am
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Achieving Performance Goals: Modular New vs. Retrofit Existing

Two very different projects – Oak Bluffs Town Hall and The Graphic Lofts – share a common goal to create a passive-house-inspired high-performance building. One building utilizes conventional construction techniques, the other building... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Net Zero Single Family Remodel: Whys & Woes

This session details the design and construction challenges inherent in a net zero energy remodel and addition to a modest single family residence in Arlington, Massachusetts, completed in winter 2021. The project team sought practical... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Energy Production & Storage & EVs

Codes

Comparing the Operating Performance of High Performing Public Buildings to their Design

High performing buildings consume considerably less energy and water than conventional buildings. Through energy modeling and water use projections, design teams have been able to calculate the amount expected to be saved during the... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Standards in Action*

Codes

Policy

Business Practice

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 9:30am to 11:00am
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Understanding Boston's Proposed Performance Standard

Boston’s proposed building emissions performance standard would set carbon emissions targets for existing large buildings that decrease over time. The targets align with the City’s 2030 goal of a 50% reduction in emissions from 2005 and... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Cities, Communities, Place

Standards in Action*

Policy

Public Health & the Built Environment: Putting Research into Action

What factors contribute to optimizing human health both indoors and outdoors within the built environment? Creating equitable and healthy communities is a product of multi-level interventions in policy, places, and people. This panel... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Cities, Communities, Place

Design and Construction Process

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Best Practices: Comparing Two Adjacent Multifamily Passive Houses

Beach Green Dunes I and Beach Green Dunes II are two of the largest multifamily Passive Houses in the country. They are adjacent to each other in the Rockaways in NY (in the flood zone) and were completed two years apart. Although they... Full Description

Resiliency

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Standards in Action*

Why Do Startups Innovate Better than Design Firms & What Can We Learn from Them?

Consider the qualities of startup culture: Continuous improvement, learning from our work. Valuing staff, treating them as our prime asset. Agile development with fast iterations and innovations. Reliance on specifications that are... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Business Practice

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 11:30am to 12:30pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Electrifying Hard-to-Heat Buildings

While there are established and feasible means to electrify space heating for many low heat load buildings like residential buildings, offices, and retail stores, all-electric solutions for high heat load buildings such as laboratories... Full Description

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Why Go Deep? Retrofit Lessons from Low-Income Multifamily Projects

Many cities in New England and beyond have carbon neutrality goals and are actively addressing new construction to hit the goals. What about all the existing buildings? How will those be addressed to reduce energy and carbon? What... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Design and Construction Process

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Tracking the Greenhouse Gas Impacts of Your Energy Efficiency Measures: New Tools & Lessons Learned for Designers & Contractors

This session will share insights from three research projects focused on greenhouse gas impacts of efficiency-related measures. How does the choice of insulation materials in new construction affect the building’s carbon footprint? What... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Virtual Power Plants: The Future of Distributed Energy Storage

The virtual power plant - aggregated, behind-the-meter solar, energy storage, and building loads dispatched in concert to meet grid needs - is a new model that has been pioneered in New England and is now being adopted by forward-... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Resiliency

Energy Production & Storage & EVs

Policy

Project Financing

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Light + Justice in Practice
Join the presenters of BuildingEnergy Boston 2021’s keynote, Light + Justice, for a roundtable discussion. During this live session, the presenters will answer audience questions and provide practical examples of how to apply the... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Cities, Communities, Place

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Mass Timber Construction in the Northeast

The climate benefits of using timber are becoming better understood by owners committed to sustainability goals, but the procurement and implementation process still present challenges. Hear from practitioners from three newly... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Project Financing

The Next Frontier: Material Transparency Across Disciplines

Transparency is the foundation for making informed decisions about the products we specify. The AEC industry is familiar with sustainability goals related to energy efficiency, but holistic discussions related to material goals across... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Project Management from Afar
Project management from a remote location is common to some and unfamiliar to others. For those previously unfamiliar, Covid-19 has accelerated the industry’s transformation towards remote management becoming the norm. For those with... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Business Practice

Thursday, May 6, 2021 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Lessons Learned from MassCEC's Triple Decker Challenge

Improving the efficiency of existing buildings and eliminating fossil fuel usage are vital steps to meeting states' goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions throughout New England. Focusing on finding scalable and replicable models for... Full Description

Resiliency

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Schools of Thought
At Bristol County Agricultural High School, the campus is the classroom. The site is an arboretum; buildings are structured with timber, encouraging conversations of carbon and land use. Composting toilets manage human waste using no... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Whose Role Is It Anyway? Understanding the Requirement of Diversity in the New Green Frontier

We recognize the need to diversify the sustainability industry, but how do we change the mostly white mostly male status quo? How do we create pathways to include underrepresented populations at the table? This session features women of... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Cities, Communities, Place

Business Practice

Multifamily Humidity Control Problems: Muggy Mayhem

Multifamily buildings with good insulation, great windows, and decent ventilation systems – what's not to like? Unfortunately, over the past five years, we have received calls from multifamily building owners who are battling persistent... Full Description

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 8:00am to 9:00am
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Case Study of a Low-Energy Multifamily Development: A Practical Discussion of Challenges & Success at The Flow Chelsea in NYC

This session features an in-depth review of an award-winning multi-family low energy (Passive House) building in New York City.  We will review the technical aspects of the building, from the components to the layout and finishes with... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Project Financing

Business Practice

HFC Refrigerants in Heat Pumps: Regulatory Update & Emissions Analysis

SPONSORED BY DXS NEW ENGLAND

The need to electrify our built environment by integrating Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHPs) and Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) systems is clear. Most ASHPs and VRF systems in the US use R-410A, a well-... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Policy

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 9:30am to 11:00am
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
The Glue That Binds PrePHab: How Designers & Builders SIMMplify Passive House
The typical picture of prefabrication – a panel being positioned by crane – belies the tremendous amount of required planning and interdisciplinary coordination. Single Integrated Manufacturing Modeling (SIMM) and off-site... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Standards in Action*

Piloting, Scaling & Committing to Healthier Materials
When it comes to toxic chemicals, there is an urgent need for market transformation. Occupants, tradespeople, and fence line communities are being contaminated by the chemical manufacturing industry, which raises concerns about... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Design and Construction Process

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Policy

Integrating Sustainability into Practice

The year 2020 marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, a decade until major carbon emission goals, and the first year of the AIA Framework for Design Excellence. There is no better time to take stock of your firm's sustainable design... Full Description

Business Practice

Low-Carbon Concrete & Steel Structures
The carbon emissions associated with the production of concrete and steel are significant contributors to the climate crisis, but these materials will remain over the next decade when much of the greatest reductions in greenhouse gas... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 11:30am to 12:30pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Decarbonization of Domestic Water Heating in Multifamily Buildings

Domestic hot water doesn’t get the attention it deserves, so this session will be talking about nothing but it! Decarbonizing DHW in multifamily settings is full of challenges, especially in a heating-dominated cold climate. We will be... Full Description

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Modular vs. Stick-built: A Side-by-Side Comparison with Habitat for Humanity

Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity, Simple City Studio, and VEIC present PV Habitat’s award-winning experiment in affordable net-zero housing. Using data from a recent build, PV Habitat compares build time, cost, and energy efficiency... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Leaving the Mesozoic Behind: From Fossil Fuels to the Future via Carbon-Neutral Buildings

New York State’s carbon-neutral policies and on-the-ground programs are the leading edge in the Northeast and provide a model for all communities. Come be informed and inspired by NYSERDA’s upcoming Carbon Neutral Buildings Roadmap. As... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Codes

Policy

Today's Acceptable Ventilation is Unacceptable

Current ventilation standards are based on odor instead of health. One cannot smell healthy air. Ventilation standards disfavor air quality in smaller residences and multi-family dwellings while excessively ventilating larger homes.... Full Description

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

Standards in Action*

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Historic Buildings & Climate Change Mitigation: Case Study of a Low-Carbon Renovation

Retrofitting vacant and underutilized historic buildings to PHIUS standards leverages an existing building’s embodied carbon, which combined with low carbon and carbon storing materials, can transform our historic buildings into carbon... Full Description

Cities, Communities, Place

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Mechanical Systems and Lighting

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Standards in Action*

Leveraging Diversity to Meet the Climate Challenge

We cannot achieve the Green Building targets for reducing carbon emissions with the current workforce. We need to rapidly increase the number of individuals in green building fields - designers, green building professionals, engineers,... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Business Practice

Proving Your Worth: Energy Loan Performance Monitoring, Verification & Marketing
Would you like to attract or deploy more funding for building energy improvements? Do gatekeepers scoff at your requests and ask for “more data”? What if your data could clearly show the value unlocked by energy upgrades? Take an in-... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Project Financing

Business Practice

Sheridan Small Homes: Affordable Passive Houses for In-Fill Development

Sheridan Small Homes is a project that originated in the classroom at the Rhode Island School of Design. The two passive house prototype student designs were created as a solution to increase affordable housing and make use of 200... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Standards in Action*

Project Financing

Friday, May 7, 2021 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm
Session Title Speakers Areas of Focus
Single Family Retrofit to Passive House EnerPHit Standards

When an experienced builder does a whole-house upgrade of their own home, you know it’s going to be done right. When that builder is Jesper Kruse, owner of Maine Passive House, you know remarkable energy efficiency will be the outcome.... Full Description

Design and Construction Process

Building Envelope, Building Science

Materials and Embodied Carbon

Health, Comfort and IAQ

The Proof is in the Project: Cost & Performance of Built Passive Multifamily

With many states incentivizing housing built to the Passive standard, everyone wants to know: are Passive-certified multifamily buildings really achieving better energy performance? The answer is yes. With many built multi-family... Full Description

Standards in Action*

Policy

Electrification + Affordable Housing: What You Need to Know

To achieve our 2050 climate goals we must go all-electric. But how do we get there? For new construction, all-electric solutions are increasingly viable. However, all-electric solutions for existing buildings are considerably more... Full Description

Climate Justice, Social Justice

Policy

Project Financing

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