5th Annual Home Performance Conference

Thanks for attending …

Tuesday, November 1st, 2016
at the
University of Oregon’s White Stag Block
– – –

Thanks so much for attending and contributing to the success of our 5th Annual Home Performance Conference! As an attendee you enjoyed a engaging exploration of the areas of Climate and Disaster Resilience that are applicable to business in the Home Performance sector.

You can find conference materials, including slide decks and recordings of the sessions, in our dropbox folder:


Home Performance Conference – DEBRIEF
We’re looking forward to seeing you on Thursday, November 10th from 11:30am – 1pm at the Lucky Labrador Brew Pub in SE Portland for our last formal member meeting of the year. This meeting will serve as a debriefing opportunity for our conference. We’ll review the feedback we received in the evaluations, we’ll dig into some topics that left attendees wanting more discussion on, and we’ll discuss potential topics for next year’s event.

A HUGE THANKS to all of our our amazing speakers! You brought some very valuable content to the forefront for an industry that can both benefit from it and help other benefit from it. Much appreciation!

And thanks again to our sponsors…

                                     Energy Trust of Oregon           Enhabit-Logo-Tagline-Horz
…thanks to our exhibitors…
mitsubishi-vrf-logo       static1.squarespace        Craft3
generalpacific_logo         mk_thumb

And thanks to all of our volunteers and our terrific Conference Coordinator – April Knudsen. For the second year in a row April arranged for and managed event logistics in a masterful and seemingly effortless way. Thanks April!!

See you again soon!
Don MacOdrum, Executive Director
Home Performance Guild of Oregon
don@hpguild.org  ||  503-754-5403




Linda George, Portland State University Professor of Environmental Sciences and Management, is a widely published expert on: atmospheric chemistry; monitoring and modeling of urban air pollutants; assessing human exposure to and perception of air pollutants and climate change; investigations of urban climate modification; as well as atmospheric science education. During this keynote presentation titled, Making $ense and Doing Good: Retrofitting for Climate Resilience, Professor George will lay out what’s expected in terms of the effects of near- and long-term regional climate change, and she’ll shed light on the psychology of how people perceive threats and what they are willing to do in response. In so doing she’ll attempt to answer the big question of how do you get people to invest in climate resilient upgrades.

Guiding homeowners to invest in resilience upgrades and preparedness, can often feel like trying to leverage their worst case scenario. Regardless of how those kitchen table discussions may feel, as a community that strives for resilience, it is essential that we get people engaged and talking about this. But there are so many other things at play here. Water and food security. Quality of life. Energy and transportation. We’re making decisions everyday and if resilience isn’t the lens were looking at things through, then we’re not making anything better for our kids. It comes back to the values and beliefs of the community, and their sense of place and belonging. This is the kind of thing that you don’t appreciate till its broken, at which point you have to work multiple times harder just to get back to what you had. Leaning into resilience is just being responsible as a resident of a place. During this keynote session, Jay Wilson will share is extensive experience in Disaster Resilience to establish a framework for our day-long discussion on the role of water, seismic upgrades, solar electric inverters, and electric vehicles in establishing a resilient home and community for our customers. In addition to being Hazard Mitigation Coordinator for Clackamas County Emergency Management and the Vice Chair of the 2012-2013 Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission (OSSPAC) which developed The Oregon Resilience Plan, Jay is also Chair of the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission (OSSPAC), and a Disaster Resilience Fellow with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

In our first panel discussion of the day, we’ll learn about many of the vulnerabilities of our water infrastructure, we’ll dig into a host of home water resilience solutions, and we’ll be introduced to the Water Efficiency Rating Score (WERS), as employed in Santa Fe, and an increasing number jurisdictions around the country. The panel will start with Rebecca Geisen, Water Resources Planning Manager with the Portland Water Bureau, who will speak to the region’s long term water planning efforts to prepare for an earthquake and the work that Portland does as it uniquely relates to climate change adaptation. Then we’ll hear from Mike Collignon, Executive Director of the Green Builder Coalition, who will speak to his experience with the WERS and its potential to enhance water resilience in Oregon. And Larry Zarker will speak to the interest of the Building Performance Institute (BPI) in establishing a nationally standardized rating for residential water efficiency for use by the Home Performance industry.

In February 2011, Christchurch, New Zealand was struck by a magnitude 6.3 earthquake, killing 185 people and destroying or damaging around 170,000 buildings. In March 2011, the magnitude-9.0 Tohoku earthquake and subsequent tsunami killed more than eighteen thousand people, devastated northeast Japan, triggered the meltdown at the Fukushima power plant, and cost an estimated two hundred and twenty billion dollars. In 2015, the New Yorker printed an article called The Really Big One, that introduced many northwest residents to the hazards of living next to the Cascadia subduction zone. In the wake of those horrific events, the article set off a rush for seismic retrofits that has yet to subside. During this session we’ll hear from Amit Kumar, Sr Structural Engineer with the City Of Portland’s Bureau of Development Services, who’ll start with a presentation on permitting and local FEMA programs. Steve Gemmell, owner and operator of Earthquake Tech, will then follow with an outline of his experience as a seismic retrofitter, he will reflect on the evolution of tech through the years and he will share his experience navigating prescriptive and custom solutions. The session’s final speaker will be Ron Vandehey, Principal at Miller Consulting Engineers, who will outline his experience in developing custom seismic solutions for residential homes.

The “Cascadia Event” earthquake threatens the extended loss of the electric grid. Many owners of solar electric systems (PV) do not know (or have forgotten) that most solar PV inverters will shut down if the grid goes down. Dan Bihn start this conversation by setting the stage for why we need disaster resilient solar and the ways in which your customers with solar may not have it. Then he’ll lay out the story of Japan, Japanese Home Energy Management Systems, the internet of things, and will then close with an overview of the solution set to be covered by the other panelists. Jonathan Cohen of Imagine Energy & Mark Farrell of Neil Kelly will then discuss resilient PV system design, and Jeni Hall from Energy Trust of Oregon will finish with a talk about Solar+Storage – both where the technology is currently and where it is going.

For our final session, Zach Henkin from Drive Oregon will lead an exploration of how the home performance community can help their customers prepare their homes for EV systems that are a supportive component of their resilience plan. He’ll touch not just on how electric vehicles have arrived as a reasonable and achievable option for most homeowners, but also how an electric car can work with the energy systems of a home. And Dan Bihn will return to discuss: options for Vehicle to Home emergency power systems; how they are being integrated throughout Japan with Home Energy Management Systems, PV systems and batteries; and, what we can expect from Vehicle to Home emergency power systems here in the Northwest. Lastly, Conrad Eustis from Portland General Electric (PGE) will bring a utility perspective to the discussion with a presentation on a PGE pilot of a Nissan Leaf charger with Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) capability, along with some other related PGE pilots.

Homes are our primary shelter, but how resilient are they? The early affects of climate change are increasing the already worrisome risks of severe winter storms, wildfires, floods and landslides, and unpredictable natural hazards like earthquakes and tsunamis loom. All these events can happen in our region, and could cause critical damage to our built environment.

The 2016 Home Performance Conference will explore solutions that the Home Performance community can offer their customers to make their homes the most sustainable and resilient structures they can be.


Don MacOdrum, Executive Director
Home Performance Guild of Oregon
don@hpguild.org  ||  503-754-5403