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As many know, natural gas, heating oil, and other fossil fuels are known to increase the carbon emissions of a home. Switching to all-electric may seem daunting for some builders, as several household systems still rely on gas today, but Green Building Advisor’s Scott Gibson says a California energy consulting firm has released a resource that may be able to help. A Pocket Guide to All-Electric Retrofits of Single-Family Homes by Redwood Energy was produced for a nonprofit community organization called Menlo Spark. It’s one of several publications Redwood has produced that aims to accelerate the trend of using electric devices.

“The global scientific community says that fossil fuels burned in our buildings are causing 28% of climate change,” it adds, “with natural gas leaks upstream of our appliances responsible for another 25% of global climate change.”

In a telephone call, Redwood’s Managing Principal Sean Armstrong said the new pocket guide is the latest in a series on electrification that also covers commercial buildings, new single-family homes, and multifamily projects. After publishing the single-family guide at the beginning of 2020, the company turned its attention to the retrofit publication and has been working on it for the last year. An early draft went out for peer review and the company posted a final version at its website within the last couple of weeks.

The earlier booklet on commercial construction was intended to help big companies electrify new construction. That turned out to be “modestly successful,” Armstrong said, with Adobe and LinkedIn committing to a couple of all-electric construction projects.

“The booklet did something,” he said. “It changed people’s thinking. It got in front of people and helped them see what options were there.”

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