Dr. Evan Mills on Pinpointing "Sleeper" Uses of Energy

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In this episode of Flanigan’s Eco-Logic, Ted speaks with Dr. Evan Mills, a recently retired Senior Scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), operated by the University of California--one of the world's leading research centers on energy and environment. He was past leader of LBNL's Center for Building Science, which represented the work of about 400 people, and continues his collaborations with "The Lab" as an Affiliate. He is also a Research Affiliate at the Energy Resources Group, operated by the University of California.

Dr. Mills is a member of the international body of scientists under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The IPCC collectively shared the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 with former U.S. Vice President Albert Arnold (Al) Gore Jr. 

He and Ted discuss his background, growing up in the LA Hollywood Hills amongst creatives of all sorts. His academic career began at an alternative high school in Southern California. He then attended the University of California at Santa Cruz and was exposed to energy and building energy, and transferred as a sophomore to the University of California at Berkeley. While completing his Bachelors of Science degree in Conservation and Resource Studies at Berkeley, he studied and taught about green buildings with Sim van der Ryn. He received a Masters of Science degree from Berkeley's Energy and Resources Group (where he is now a Research Affiliate) and a Ph.D. from the Department of Environmental and Energy Systems Studies under Thomas B. Johansson at Lund University in Sweden. 

In Sweden, he worked closely with the Swedish State Power Board (Vattenfall) and the Swedish National Board for Industrial and Technical Development on national energy planning projects, while serving as an energy advisor to the Swedish Parliamentary Working Group on Energy Futures. He then spent most of his career at LBNL. His closest mentor and collaborator there was Art Rosenfeld, for whom he served as his Deputy Director of the Center for Building Science, later leading the Center. He also currently consults widely for private industry and the public sector.

Dr. Mills research centers on the impacts of climate change and mitigating those impacts through reduced emissions and loss prevention. His specialties are energy efficiency in buildings and industry and the intersection of energy technology, global climate, and risk management. His interests further center around pinpointing "sleeper" uses of energy and empowering policymakers, consumers, and non-traditional market actors to capture improved efficiencies, reduced greenhouse-gas emissions, resilience, and other non-energy benefits. 

Specifically, he highlights the edge cases and topics that don't get attention from mainstream policies, programs, or research agendas like the problem of kerosene lighting in the developing world, the issue of housing insurance in the face of climate change, green-gaming, the carbon footprint of cannabis cultivation, and remaining optimistic about the areas of improvement in building commissioning. 
Dr. Evan Mills on Pinpointing "Sleeper" Uses of Energy
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