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Alisa Petersen

Senior Associate
  • Carbon-free Cities and States

Alisa Petersen is an Senior Associate on Rocky Mountain Institute’s Buildings team. She currently works on the Residential Energy+ initiative analyzing paths to zero carbon performance for existing residential buildings.


Prior to joining RMI, Alisa worked for Seventhwave, a nonprofit energy efficiency company in Madison Wisconsin, where she served as an Energy Engineer and Project Manager. At Seventhwave, Alisa provided technical assistance to building owners and design teams to help inform a more energy efficient building design. Although she analyzed all types of commercial buildings, she specialized in multifamily buildings and supermarkets. She also researched and wrote publications on building energy conservation measures including demand control kitchen ventilation, high efficiency refrigerated display cases, lighting task tuning, and cold climate facades.


B.Sc.,, Mechanical Engineering, UW-Madison

Certificate in Engineering for Energy Sustainability, UW-Madison

LEED Accredited Professional, Building Design and Construction (LEED AP BD+C)

Engineer in Training (EIT)

Authored Works
Outlet Blog Post

An Existing Building Portfolio on a Path to Net-Zero Energy

Many developers cite first-cost as a barrier to pursuing net-zero energy in their new and existing building projects. But one leading developer in Colorado is flipping the script on this assumption, showing that prioritizing energy performance can open up new cash flows, as opposed to draining existing ones. John Madden…

Outlet Blog Post

Four Insights from the Most Successful NZE Home Builders

The number of net-zero energy (NZE) homes in the US is growing at an exciting rate (it has grown by 33 percent from 2015 to 2016), but this growth is nowhere near fast enough to make NZE homes mainstream. Today, they are a very niche offering, comprising roughly…

Outlet Blog Post

A City in the Rockies Paves the Way for Net-Zero Energy Leases

Boulder, Colorado, is a national leader in sustainability—especially when it comes to the built environment. The City of Boulder has the most aggressive new construction energy code in the country, the nation’s first voter-approved tax dedicated to addressing climate change, and a benchmarking policy that requires efficiency…

Outlet Blog Post

The Piece of Paper that Could Make or Break Commercial Net-Zero Energy

I recently joined the very small minority of people who find leasing language interesting. Leases tend to be dry and confusing with their lawyer jargon of henceforths and herebys, but if you can look past the legalese, leases can be used as a critical lever to scale net-zero energy (NZE)…