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Equitably Reducing Air Pollution in Our Homes

May 26, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

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Pollution from burning fossil gas in appliances in Midwestern buildings is on the rise and must be addressed urgently to reduce the health, safety, and economic impacts associated with climate change and poor air quality. These impacts are now borne disproportionately by communities of color, under-resourced households, and constituencies that have historically been underrepresented in policy and decision-making processes. The communities most at risk from COVID-19 have the most to gain from clean, healthy, pollution-free buildings.

Join us on Tuesday, May 26 (10-11am Central) as the Midwest Building Decarbonization Coalition hosts leading experts from the Rocky Mountain Institute, Sierra Club, and Citizens Utility Board (Illinois) to discuss the equity implications of transitioning our gas stoves, furnaces, and water heaters to super-efficient, all-electric appliances run on clean, renewable energy. While building decarbonization presents opportunities to improve health and safety and reduce energy burden, programs and policies that advance this transition must be developed in partnership with affected communities to ensure that they have access to the benefits of building decarbonization.

This discussion will explore what building decarbonization is and what it means in the Midwest. Our speakers will take a deeper dive into what is at stake in terms of health, safety, and affordability. We will also introduce the emerging Midwestern Building Decarbonization Coalition and identify opportunities to engage with this growing community of stakeholders working to develop safe, healthy, and affordable housing while simultaneously slashing climate pollution.

Please register in advance here. A recording of the webinar will be made available to all those who pre-register. This event is free.


Brady Seals is a senior associate in Rocky Mountain Institute’s Building Electrification program where she works at the junction of air quality, buildings, and human health. She engages stakeholders in rapidly transitioning to clean energy solutions that deliver environmental, health, and economic benefits. Brady comes to RMI with a decade of renewable energy experience within the global household energy sector. She has commercialized clean technologies and fuels by directing programs within the nonprofit and corporate sectors in more than 16 countries. 

Cara Bottorff is an Electric Sector Analyst with the Sierra Club, the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization with over 3.8 million members and supporters nation-wide. She focuses on issues with gas from extraction to transport to end use in buildings and power plants, providing quantitative analysis and strategic recommendations for the organization’s mission to stop catastrophic climate change. Cara received her B.A. in Public Policy with minors in Economics and Global Sustainability from University of Virginia and went on to complete a Master’s of Public Policy at University of Virginia (Go Hoos!). Prior to Sierra Club, Cara was a co-owner of Key-Log Economics, an environmental economics consulting firm. Cara spends her free time exploring the wonderful natural areas surrounding Charlottesville, Virginia with her partner and their dog, visiting local restaurants, and making ice cream.   

Sarah Moskowitz is Deputy Director at the Citizens Utility Board (CUB), a Chicago-based nonprofit consumer advocacy group that represents the interests of residential and small business utility customers through outreach, education, litigation, and policy advocacy.  She started at CUB in the summer of 2000 and has served in a variety of roles there, from providing direct consumer services to managing the organization’s statewide education and advocacy efforts.  These efforts have included interfacing with consumers at hundreds of grassroots events each year, and the design and implementation of programs like the Illinois Energy Star Appliance Rebate Program, the CUB Energy Saver online behavior change tool, and the CUB Energy Responder program, an opt-in demand-response initiative in which consumers used plugin load control devices to curb their peak usage.  Sarah now oversees the development of CUB’s clean energy outreach strategy in a way that uses policy research and community outreach to identify equitable and consumer-friendly climate solutions.  She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Chicago. 


May 26, 2020
10:00 am - 11:00 am


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