Building Below Zero: The Net Positive Transformation

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Building Below Zero: The Net Positive Transformation


stok was recently featured in a one-hour PBS documentary entitled “Building Below Zero: The Net Zero Plus Transformation.” Narrated by Ted Danson, the documentary examines Net Zero Energy (NZE) buildings—facilities that create more energy than they consume. Watch the film for in-depth information on the strategies and systems that propel buildings beyond net zero performance (and see some of your favorite stok team members hard at work).


stok joined the film’s director and 30 local experts at a series of events in five cities across California to screen the film and discuss NZE.

The topic is particularly relevant based on California’s aggressive target for all new homes to achieve net zero by 2020. That goal will only be possible based on the efforts of collaborative teams of industry experts, building owners, architects, and sustainability consultants.

One industry innovator who is instrumental to building awareness for NZE is Brad Liljequist, Director of the Zero Energy Program for the International Living Future Institute (ILFI). An international thought leader in net zero building strategies and systems, Liljequist gave opening remarks at all five events, sharing insight into the program and how to effectively pursue it. He shed light on three key changes to the Zero Energy Program that will make the road to zero much more attainable, and was, as always, a wealth of knowledge on the net zero industry and market.

Across our five events, we heard from panels of local net zero experts representing diverse industries and backgrounds, including stok’s own Warren Neilson. The lively conversations included the perspectives of architects, developers, contractors, consultants, engineers, and city planners, among others.

The events also gave attendees access to some of the most visually stunning and impressive sustainable buildings in the state—ArchNexus Sacramento, LinkedIn Sunnyvale, DPR Construction San Francisco, BuroHappold Los Angeles, BNIM San Diego.


If you’d like more examples of NZE innovation in practice, stok has worked on dozens of net zero projects, including the Zero Net Energy Center (ZNEC), the Exploratorium, and DPR Construction—San Francisco’s first certified NZE office.

Do you have questions about Net Zero Energy? Get in touch with stok’s Warren Neilson. And if you missed the NZE event series, we have upcoming events in Denver and Boulder, and likely even more in California.


Finally, we’d like to recognize the organizations that participated to the success of this event series. We were honored to contribute to the discussion about net zero innovation alongside them.

Sacramento: ArchNexus, Indigo Architects, Mutual Housing California, Sacramento State University

Silicon Valley: Sharp Development, Digital Realty, Stanford SLAC, The Allen Group, First Housing

San Francisco: City of San Francisco, PG&E, Zero Net Energy Center, The Allen Group, Exploratorium

Los Angeles: BuroHappold Engineering, City of Santa Monica Sustainable Buildings Department, NZP ETI, PDE Total Energy Solutions, USGBC

San Diego: DNV GL, DPR Construction, BNIM Architects, Miller Hull Partnership, Brummitt Energy, Center for Sustainable Energy