School of Thought
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Oh, do we have thoughts

Berkeley Passes on Gas

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What causes nearly two-thirds of the carbon pollution in the atmosphere? It’s not the cars on the road. Go ahead, take another gas (ahem) guess.

Give up yet?

Your house is not very good for your health. Go ahead and file this under ‘Things You Didn’t Know.”

Last Tuesday, Berkeley passed a ban on natural gas in new construction homes across the city. This makes Berkeley the first city in the nation to take this kind of measure against the implementation of gas lines and infrastructure in many new East Bay homes.

Since then, the news has been making headlines. Let’s hear it for California!

There are plenty of states that are stepping up to the plate, including New York, to implement policies that will help us rely less on burning fossil fuels and more on actual, renewable, clean energy sources.

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Why do we bring this up?

Our newest client is the Building Decarbonization Coalition (BDC). It’s a group of organizations and companies working together to achieve California’s energy goals, which were set forth in SB 100’s clean energy bill last year.

The plan is to decrease carbon emissions (green-house gases) by 20 percent in the next six years and 40 percent by 2030. This means adopting zero-emission building codes to achieve this goal within the next 10 years. For BDC, a huge part of solving this climate crisis will mean a long-term investment in electrification. The idea here is that we need to begin choosing to use electrical appliances that burn cleaner energy than natural gas could in our home. You can find plenty more details in A Roadmap to Decarbonize California’s Buildings and learn more about how they hope to mitigate the effects of our energy crisis.

You’d think commercial buildings are producing the bulk of the pollution in our atmosphere but, in fact, our residential homes are a bigger part of the problem.

This is not our fault, of course. Most of us just move into our homes the way they are set up. We think we’re getting the best that’s out there when we hear our appliances are “energy efficient”.

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There’s a famous adage out there that says, “you can’t know what you don’t know.” Let’s argue for a moment that once you do know, you can’t un-know. So, what are we going to do with this information?

California has always been ahead of the curve. Our state was banning plastic bags, trying to get gas guzzling cars off the road, and solving a water crisis before most other states knew what the term “organic” meant. We’re change-makers and we know how to drive a hard bargain when it comes to saving the environment from the forces that threaten it.

It’s hard to save the planet when we want to make decisions that save money, allow us to be comfortable, and make purchases that don’t take a lot of extra time or thought. Some investments require a little more foresight and the move towards a future with cleaner energy will remind us of that. There’s still a lot we can do to make an impact.

People often say, “I’m doing all I can” to be greener and better to the environment. There’s some truth in that, but this campaign for electrification is here to challenge that notion.

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It’s always been our goal here at the agency to work on campaigns that mean something.

We’re not just out here trying to stuff cash in the bank or look cool in front of our friends. We want to work with the type of clients who care about the world enough to want to change it. We’re all about working with people who take a look at business-as-usual and say, “hey, this isn’t working for me anymore.”

We’re extending a big congratulations to Berkeley for their constant focus on improving the state of things and their serious attention to the facts. We’re also lauding BDC for stepping up and choosing us to help them do it.

And us? We’re putting our heads down to work out how we can make clean energy feel tangible for everyone involved so we can all appreciate a greener future.