Solutions Session on Bridging the Gap: Delivering IRA Rebates to LMI Multifamily Residents

Lead: Reuven Sussman

Date: August 7, 2024 (at Summer Study)


Work together on a real-life problem to help figure out solutions! This year’s BECC Solutions Session is sponsored by the US Department of Energy and will take place in person on Wednesday afternoon at Summer Study on Buildings. We will brainstorm behavior-informed solutions to an important challenge: addressing the split incentive issue and getting Inflation Reduction Act incentives to tenants in low-to-moderate income multifamily building tenants. This population segment can benefit greatly from the new federal energy upgrade incentives, but they too frequently fall between the cracks of energy retrofit programs. Your ideas will inform how Seattle City Light develops and markets its midsized multifamily building energy programs and, in the process, provide a roadmap for other utilities facing the same challenges. Share your experience shifting consumer behavior and learn new theories from behavioral science for tackling these types of problems. Help determine how to solve the problem and suggest where more research is needed. Your contributions will make a difference.


  • Problem presenter: Shelby Ketchum, Seattle City Light
  • Expert Panelist: Beth Karlin, See Change Institute
  • Moderator: Reuven Sussman, ACEEE

Shelby Ketchum

Shelby Ketchum, Inflation Reduction Act Specialist, Seattle City Light

Shelby Ketchum, Inflation Reduction Act Specialist at Seattle City Light, is a dedicated advocate for equitable and sustainable energy solutions. With a background that includes experience in skilled trades, community organizing, and energy policy, Shelby brings a unique perspective to his work, which is primarily centered on decarbonizing the built environment through building electrification and the proliferation of distributed energy resources. He holds a Master’s degree in Urban Planning and a Bachelor’s degree in Urban and Labor Studies. His career is driven by a passion and a commitment to a sustainable future, which is best encapsulated in the vision of ‘Net Zero By Retirement.'”

Beth Karlin, Founder and CEO, See Change Institute

Beth and her team are working on projects to train energy managers on behavior change, understand and influence adoption of smart home technology, and support community energy programs in California. Beth is also Past President of the American Psychological Association’s Environmental Psychology Division, serves on the editorial board for Energy Efficiency Journal, and is a member of the National Academies of Science Environmental Health Matters Initiative (EHMI) and the BECC organizing committee. Before receiving her Ph.D. in Social Ecology, Beth spent a decade working in K-12 education, holding positions as a teacher, counselor, curriculum designer, and school administrator. She believes that the role of a researcher is not only to better understand the world but also to improve it and hopes that her work is able to serve both purposes.

Reuven Sussman, Director of the Behavior, Health and Human Dimensions Program, ACEEE

Dr. Sussman directs research and implementation of energy efficiency behavior change and health programs. He co-chairs the annual conference on Behavior, Energy and Climate Change (BECC) and has authored numerous academic papers and book chapters on the psychology of climate change, behavioral interventions to encourage energy efficiency, and the psychological determinants of pro-environmental behavior. Dr. Sussman has been an advisor for organizations, including the G20, that implement energy efficiency behavior change programs, and has testified before the California legislature and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. He as also served as an expert reviewer for academic journals and large-scale government grant opportunities. Reuven is an adjunct professor and member of the Faculty of Graduate Studies at the University of Victoria (Canada) and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Environmental Psychology and Journal of Social Psychology. Dr. Sussman earned a doctor of science in social and environmental psychology from the University of Victoria.