From Jeff Marshall, Stok Client Solutions Director
Photo Credit: Jeff Durkin, Bread Truck Films
SDGBC: What inspired Stok to support sustainable initiatives and become a sponsor of the San Diego Green Building Council? We would love to hear more about Stok's motivations and values behind your support.
Stok has had a presence in San Diego and has been a sponsor of SDGBC for more than a decade. In 2019, San Diego-based building performance consultant Brummitt Energy Associates joined Stok, which strengthened in-house engineering and net zero expertise.
We feel completely aligned with the mission and vision of the San Diego Green Building Council to inspire, educate, and collaborate within our community to transform our built environment toward true sustainability with buildings and communities that, within a generation, will regenerate and sustain the health and vitality of all life. We appreciate SDGBC’s Pillar of Equity and how that is integral to creating healthy, regenerative buildings and communities.
Founded in 2008, Stok provides integrated sustainability and high-performance building services worldwide on behalf of our clients. Stok is committed to a radically better world for all. Our team has deep expertise across the built environment in engineering, building science, project management, workplace services, carbon, ESG, and of course, sustainability.
Our differentiator is in how we provide services across interrelated but often siloed areas of sustainability consulting, energy and performance engineering, and real estate and workplace solutions. We’re focused on ensuring owners and occupiers invest wisely.
Photo Credit: Chipper Hatter
SDGBC: How has the partnership between Stok and the San Diego Green Building Council influenced Stok or helped amplify their mission in San Diego County?
Our subject matter experts have enjoyed presenting at numerous San Diego Green Building Council Conferences and Expos over the years, sharing lessons learned with our colleagues. The relationships forged with this level of engagement has contributed to our professional credibility and created opportunities for our team.
We’ve found professional development opportunities for team members attending SDGBC programs and networked with local AEC industry partners, earning recognition for client work that we’re proud to share (e.g., County of San Diego). We’re also exploring SDGBC’s Green Assistance Program which provides free technical assistance for non-profits as we look for ways to expand our impact through partnerships.
SDGBC: Can you share a success story or specific project in the San Diego region that you are really excited about?
Stok: We’ve been a sustainability and energy partner for the County of San Diego for years, working on portfolio-level guidelines and asset-level implementation. It’s been incredible working with such a forward-thinking county that’s been redefining what’s possible for public portfolios, including helping to develop the County’s Zero Net Energy Portfolio Plan, which lays out actions for the CoSD to cost-effectively cut its energy footprint in half by 2030 across 11 million square feet of real estate.
Five years since the adoption of the County of San Diego’s groundbreaking Zero Net Energy (ZNE) Portfolio Plan, Stok helped the County evolve the plan with a new emphasis on carbon reduction. This ambitious new Zero Carbon Portfolio Plan aims to achieve a 90% reduction in operational carbon across the County’s 1,000+ building portfolio by 2030, which will be achieved through a combination of energy efficiency, retro-commissioning, monitoring-based commissioning, onsite solar, community choice power purchasing, and building electrification projects. The plan is published and, we’re now supporting implementation, including electrification projects.
Zero Energy Certified under the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) and the County of San Diego’s third Zero Net Energy (ZNE) library (Stok also worked on the first – Alpine Branch Library), the Borrego Springs Library features energy-efficient design, solar shading, daylight harvesting, a durable building envelope, and onsite renewables to achieve ZNE performance in the harsh Anza Borrego desert climate. The County partnered with Stok from the outset to determine the building’s ZNE feasibility, and then to ensure the building was designed and operated at ZNE.
The East County Office and Archives is the first Zero Energy archive facility in the U.S. certified by the International Living Future Institute and achieved its targeted LEED v4 Gold certification. Stok was faced with navigating the very technical, controlled, and energy-intensive conditions required of an archive, including a narrow range of temperature, humidity, and pollutant conditions.
We’ve worked extensively with IQHQ, a premier life science real estate investment trust, leader in real estate sustainability, and fellow SDGBC sponsor.
On one local project, IQHQ is refreshing existing building stock in the heart of La Jolla and adding state-of-the-art life science core and shell buildings to create an exceptional life science district spanning nearly 900,000 square feet. The project is focused on reducing operational and embodied carbon, as well as enhancing the health of its occupants – an ongoing priority across IQHQ’s real estate portfolio - setting bold sustainability, carbon reduction, and health goals across its portfolio, to bring a holistic perspective to drive impacts where they matter most to this life science district. This includes LEED and Fitwel certification pursuits to ensure sustainability and health goals are achieved and providing a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to quantify the project’s carbon footprint and assist in identifying opportunities for low-carbon alternatives.
Stok serves clients and projects worldwide from offices in San Francisco, San Diego, and Denver and has served clients in San Diego for decades. Stok is highly committed to influencing and shaping the sustainable building landscape for the San Diego green building industry through direct community involvement and building local networks and SDGBC has offered valuable ways to engage with fellow sustainability leaders in the region.