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California is going through a policy paradigm shift concerning energy efficiency, the goal of saving energy overall taking a back seat to reducing emissions. With all of these changes, it’s…

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Rooftops in city

Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director Recently, there has been a noticeable shift in California energy efficiency policy. For years the focus has been on the overall reduction in energy use. Today, the goals are much more complicated, with aggressive state mandates specifically targeting greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, when energy savings occur has become a factor, often superseding total consumption. The utilities have responded with time-of-use rates and incentives. In California, the transportation sector is by far


Posted by Gabe Lieb, EFCA Director of Strategy Our executive director Charley Cormany works with the Building Decarbonization Coalition and National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) to bring a contractor’s perspective to residential decarbonization and electrification policy in California.  Efficiency First California (EFCA) manages the SMUD Home Performance Program, which last year started incentivizing electrification with hefty rebates. I subscribe to MCE’s 100% renewable energy  Deep Green rates. You could say that I’m an electrification champion. So why did I just

Person with card up their sleeve

Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director Building Science (BS) is pretty powerful stuff. Home performance contractors have been providing data and improving building science techniques for well over 30 years now. But while there is no question building retrofits have many benefits, selling the concept to homeowners and property managers is no small feat. While early adopters and others who have specific concerns (such as high utility bills or a child with respiratory problems) are relatively easy to convince,

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Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director Two years ago at the Home Performance Coalition conference in Nashville, a few folks had an after-hours conversation discussing the state of the efficiency industry and the players involved. At the time, Efficiency First National was struggling financially and with membership growth. From the conversation, it became evident that several organizations were replicating each other’s efforts in this small and resourced-constrained industry. Someone floated the idea that perhaps we could play to each


Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director The Grid Is Changing The recent fires in California have had tragic consequences. Thousands of people have lost their homes. Many have lost loved ones too. In many cases, the fires were caused by downed or damaged power lines or failed electrical distribution equipment, and the utility, PG&E, has been blamed. If PG&E is found guilty of violating mandates set by the CPUC for maintaining their equipment and clearing trees from their power

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Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director Recently, I attended the 39th annual Institute of Heating and Air Conditioning Industries (IHACI) trade show in Pasadena, California, in the hopes of learning about some exciting new products and maybe a couple new technologies for the heating and cooling industries (HVACR).  It’s been about four years since I was actively involved as a contractor/installer, and I was curious to see how many new solutions have been developed in my time away from

Power lines at dusk

Home performance hasn’t changed much over the past 30 years. Recently though, a few big things have started to change in the world of energy. Contractors need to be aware…

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Posted by Charley Cormany, EFCA Executive Director A few rotten apples The world is full of contractor horror stories. Over the years, contractors have lost customer trust, often for good reason. Simple mistakes like forgetting to re-install a water heater vent after a roof replacement could have drastic consequences if the exhaust fumes, and potentially carbon monoxide, were to re-enter the building. Unfortunately, this lack of confidence from the public means that gaining a customer’s trust can be a real

House utilizing electrification infographic

It’s amazing how many energy efficiency conferences and workshops have surfaced recently. The Redwood Energy Zero Net Energy Retreat, which takes place twice a year, is one of the best…

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