Getting to Net Zero – A Discussion on Low Carbon Construction (1.5 LU / HSW)


The construction industry, through building construction and building use, contributes roughly 40% of total anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions to the environment. Embodied carbon – emissions from building materials and construction – makes up over 25% of this total. The design decisions we make as structural engineers and architects directly impact these emissions. This gives us vital role to play in reducing the environmental impact of the built environment. This panel session will discuss advances the structural engineering profession is making toward net zero embodied carbon structures, discuss the top 3 actions structural engineers and architects can take to reduce the embodied carbon in their projects, and discuss how structural engineers and architects can work better together to effectively reduce the embodied carbon of their projects.

This session will be of interest to all building professionals and will raise awareness among architects and structural engineers about how they can make wiser design choices to reduce emissions. Attendees will leave with an idea of sustainable strategies that can be implemented on their projects. This session will include panelists who helped develop the first Low Carbon Concrete Building Code in the U.S. as well as panelists who are involved in the Structural Engineering movement, SE2050, to get to net zero embodied carbon structures by year 2050. This session will be interactive, so come with your questions and ready for discussion!

Learning objectives:

  • Understand sustainable strategies available for all projects and learn how architects and structural engineers can incorporate sustainable design strategies into their everyday practice.
  • Learn about the latest in low carbon construction including the newly adopted low carbon concrete code in Marin County and Berkeley as well as the SE2050 initiative recently backed by ASCE Structural Engineering Institute
  • Understand the ways in which structural engineers and architects can work better together to achieve lower carbon construction
  • Understand the importance of material and structural system selection and learn about quantifying and reducing carbon impacts of a building with life-cycle assessment



February 19, 2020


6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


AIASF Offices
130 Sutter Street, #600 San Francisco, CA 94104


  • Brad Jacobsen
    Brad Jacobsen

    Brad Jacobson, AIA, LEED AP is a Principal at EHDD, an architectural design firm based in San Francisco. His focus is on helping clients lead the way towards a carbon neutral built environment by 2050, starting with all-electric, net zero energy new buildings today. He has led a wide range of EHDD’s high performance, climate-conscious projects since joining the firm in 2002, including the Net Zero Energy and LEED Platinum certified headquarters for The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, which was named a National American Institute of Architects Top Ten Green Building in 2014.

  • Bruce King
    Bruce King

    Bruce King, Founder and Director of the Ecological Building Network (EBNet) and author of The New Carbon Architecture, will captivate your imagination by the possibility of architecture’s ability to pull huge amounts of carbon out of the atmosphere and lock it up as walls, roofs, foundations, and insulation. The New Carbon Architecture is a paradigm-shifting tour of the innovations in architecture and construction that are making this happen.

  • Larry Strain
    Larry Strain

    Larry Strain, FAIA, LEED AP, has 40+ year background in sustainable design and studied ecological systems at Evergreen State College and the Farallones Institute. He wrote a Guideline Specification for Green Materials, which became part of Building Green’s GreenSpec Directory. He has spoken on materials and sustainability at conferences throughout the country, is a past board member of the Northern California Chapter of the USGBC, and currently serves on the boards of the Ecological Building Network and the Carbon Leadership Forum. For the past seven years Larry has focused on reducing the total carbon footprint of our buildings.

  • Megan Stringer
    Megan Stringer

    Megan Stringer, S.E., LEED AP BD+C, is an Associate Principal with Holmes Structures, in the San Francisco office. She has led the structural design on numerous large-scale commercial office and residential projects, including North America’s largest mass timber building slated to open in 2020. An active member in structural engineering professional associations, Megan serves on the SEAONC Board of Directors is Chair for the SEAOC Sustainable Design Committee, and is Co-Chair of the ASCE Structural Engineering Institute’s Sustainability Committee.

  • Nicholas Miley
    Nicholas Miley

    Nicholas Miley, S.E., is a senior engineer with KPFF Consulting Engineers in San Francisco and co-chair of the SEAONC Sustainable Design Committee. He has 7 years of experience as a designer and project manager for public, retail, office, multi-family residential, seismic retrofit and historic renovation projects. Passionate about innovation in sustainable design, he focused his undergraduate education at University of California, Davis and masters at Stanford University in sustainable design and construction. Nicholas was the lead author and presenter for the Sustainable Design Committee’s study “Embodied Carbon Impacts of California Mix Designs” published in the 2019 SEAOC convention proceedings.

  • Vaclav Hasik
    Vaclav Hasik

    Vaclav Hasik, PhD, LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, is a sustainability analyst and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) expert for Urban Fabrick. He recently obtained his PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh where he focused on developing new data and improving methods for LCA of buildings. He was also part of a team working to establish indoor air quality protocol and benchmarks for the Pittsburgh 2030 District, was actively involved in carbon accounting and sustainability planning for the University of Pittsburgh and helped advance the use of LCA in practice during his time with the research group at KieranTimberlake. Vaclav is passionate about using computational and analytical tools to improve the sustainability and resilience of the buildings we all live and work in. He is an active member of the Embodied Carbon Network and a founder of its Bay Area chapter.


AIA San Francisco
(415) 874-2620

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