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Welcome Ethan Goldman, Director of Customer Solutions

Posted on
February 26, 2019
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Welcome Ethan Goldman, Director of Customer Solutions

OpenEE is pleased to Welcome Ethan Goldman as Director of Customer Solutions.

Ethan brings to the team years of experience applying data science, metering and sensor networking to solve energy and climate challenges. Ethan previously worked as Energy Informatics Architect at Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC), where he designed and developed software to automatically process data from smart meters and connected devices in order to identify and quantify energy savings.

At OpenEE, Ethan will bring his first-hand knowledge of utility program measurement and verification techniques and experience creating data analytics software systems to help craft solutions that enable customers to successfully navigate emerging distributed energy markets, meet clean energy goals and conquer the climate crisis.

Ethan will also apply experience gained at the Hampshire College juggling club to his role as head coach of the first OpenEE intramural juggling team.

And now, a word from Ethan on why he is excited to join the OpenEE team:

After a decade in energy efficiency, much of which was spent applying data science to Measurement and Verification, I'm excited to join the Open Energy Efficiency team in order to help create market-based solutions to “mine” and sell energy waste.

I first discovered OpenEEmeter back in the pre-version-1.0 days, and it immediately made sense: automatically (and transparently) measuring energy savings so that M&V would be less “dark arts” and more “standard weights and measures.”

In part, my focus on software and buildings simply reflects the natural intersection of my fascination with architecture and my aptitude for math, physics, and programming. But it also comes from an awareness that buildings are responsible for a significant portion of the energy we consume. In order to avert a climate crisis, we need to make drastic improvements in the energy systems of buildings.

To have an impact, these improvements will need to be flexible, scalable, and reliable--and they'll need to deliver more than just 1-2 percent savings per year. To make this happen, we need to mobilize more capital and reduce time lags and transactional friction.

For nearly a decade now, I have been immersed in the energy efficiency industry. I started out in measurement and verification (M&V), deploying sub-meters on the largest projects in a portfolio so the peak reduction impacts of efficiency could meet the statistical precision needed to bid them into the ISO New England Forward Capacity Market.

While this was an important step toward efficiency becoming a resource on par with generation in grid infrastructure planning, I also saw first-hand how often the engineering estimates on which those savings claims were based did not hold up to the cold light of meter data.

The program as a whole was making a “cost-effective” impact, but the variation between individual projects was staggering. How much more savings could be achieved if those data-driven insights could be provided as automated feedback to efficiency program staff, building contractors, and customers? How much more would efficiency be worth if we knew when and where it was happening and there was higher confidence in its impact?

After a few years of watching both the OpenEE software and the efficiency industry mature, adding the CalTRACK stakeholder process and hourly methods, it was clear that this was how we could finally unlock the power of data analytics to maximize investment in energy efficiency. I joined the team in order to be a part of this revolution.

This transition from monthly programs to time and locational efficiency as a resource won’t be easy, since it’s not enough to build great software that automates data analysis. We also need to work with utility programs and regulators, market aggregators, building contractors and even customers to educate them on how to use these tools to achieve their goals. I know first-hand the challenges of delivering verifiable, cost-effective energy savings, and I look forward to developing practical solutions that help everyone meet ambitious goals.

The mission is simple: preserve human civilization by operating within our carbon budget.

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