UC Santa Barbara

April 28th - May 1st, 2021: Climate Justice Symposium for Transforming Education; July 2021 CHESC

Webinar Series Registration

CHESC Webinar Series

From Zero Net Energy to Decarbonization: Modeling the Shift

In 2017, San Mateo County Community College developed a Zero Net Energy Strategy. The goal was simple: to produce as much energy as we consume on-site on an annual basis. This first-generation plan turned out to be a lot harder to implement without a bit more detail on the identified measures. As such, the ZNE strategy was updated in 2018 to look at specific tactics like campus curtailment.  As SMCCCD continued to optimize and move toward electrification we knew that ZNE would not be enough to match the scope, scale, and math of the climate crisis. We also needed decarbonize and we needed to look across all of our operations to address emissions.

Moving the needle across three campuses with their 83 buildings, 45,000 students and 2,000 faculty and staff members, is no small task. Looking back at past emissions would only complicate matters as we look to spark innovation and intervene to address some of the most critical issues of our time.

The SMCCCD Decarbonization Strategy highlights the necessary measures needed to transition to a Zero Net Carbon district. This strategy looks at measures ranging from electrifying central boiler systems to implementing sustainable purchasing policies for the district in an effort to drastically reduce the district’s GHG emissions. The specifics of this strategy are tailored for SMCCCD, but the learnings from and structure of the strategy can facilitate decarbonization efforts of campus environments around the nation. 


May 26, 2020 2pm-3pm

Register at:



Joe Fullerton

Sustainability Manager

San Mateo County Community College District

Fatima Abdul-Khabir

Decarbonization Program Associate

San Matro County Community College District