Housing Innovation Alliance's Podcast

Tangible Climate Impact + Embodied Carbon with Nicole Granath

September 21, 2023 Housing Innovation Alliance Season 4 Episode 6
Housing Innovation Alliance's Podcast
Tangible Climate Impact + Embodied Carbon with Nicole Granath
Show Notes Transcript

Get to know Nicole Granath, Co-Founder and COO of Tangible – your platform for managing embodied carbon.

Hear her story –how she got from Harvard to China and back again, why she became interested in the environmental impact of real estate, key insights featuring embodied carbon as the next era of building codes, and much more.

Read more via this LinkedIn article: Embodied Carbon The Next Era of Building Codes

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Betsy Scott (00:00):

Hi, I'm Betsy Scott with the Housing Innovation Alliance. I'm excited to be chatting with Nicole Grani today. She's the co-founder of tangible and embodied carbon reporting software for real estate developers and owners. Tangible is a rising star in the space and is involved in the latest set of concept homes from the America at Home study team, of which the alliance is apart. So welcome, Nicole. Thank

Nicole Granath (00:22):

You so much for having me, Betsy. Appreciate it.

Betsy Scott (00:24):

So before we discuss tangible in more detail, I'd love to know more about your journey. I've kind of, you know, gone with the flow in my own career, but when I looked you up on LinkedIn, it was clear that where you are today was no accident. There was a clear pathway that you followed. So can you give us a quick roadmap of how you got from Harvard to China and back again, and how you became interested in the environmental impact of real estate?

Nicole Granath (00:51):

Absolutely. I will try my hardest to keep it <laugh> concise, but as you mentioned, there are maybe one or two winding paths that, that connected those different points. And so, yeah, it's definitely been for me a question of how do I approach the question of humans impact on the broader environment and looking at that from the lens of activism on campus to sustainable, you know e s G screens in investing, and then ultimately to moving to China and saying, you know what? I just want to <laugh> have the, some type of hands-on impact and, and see where I can, can be the most impactful. So that was really what led me to say to, to sell all of my things in <laugh>, <laugh>, do a nice little Northern National Parks Road trip and, and then to, to go to China and, and go, okay, I'm here.

Nicole Granath (01:47):

Let's see, you know, where I can have that, that impact. That was in 2018 that, that I left, you know, being in finance in, in the New York world. And I sat down, I think the intergovernmental panel on climate change had come out with a list of, these are the 10 things that need to happen by 2030. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>. And I went through and I was like, great, I don't have the PhD for geoengineering, <laugh>, or a few of these other things, but maybe there's some way that I can help in the transportation sector, in the energy sector, in agriculture or in buildings. And buildings was the area that I knew the least about. But I saw this statistic that is responsible for 38% of global emissions. I was like that there just seems like maybe there's something there that I can have some entry point of, of helping existing efforts.

Nicole Granath (02:38):

So that was really, yeah, I knocked on a whole bunch of doors, <laugh> and via cold LinkedIn outreach and people who kindly introduced me to more people and 49 meetings across four weeks and taking high speed rail across China. <Laugh>, I sixth degree connection was sitting in front of the c e o of a flooring manufacturer. And he himself had been doing all of their sustainability initiatives. 'cause He cared really deeply and then was like, yeah, we've been looking for someone to <laugh>, come build this out. Do you, do you wanna come do it? I was like, absolutely. I'm sitting there. No experience in manufacturing <laugh>, no experience in sustainability and no experience in all Mandarin environments. But we just, I jumped in and was like, okay, let's, let's go for it. So that was the, the winding path and it was an incredible experience to get the understanding at the supply chain level of where folks are directing their efforts to decarbonize, and then where some of those biggest lowest hanging fruits are.

Nicole Granath (03:41):

Because there's a lot, as we all know, and I know you've been deep diving in the esg mm-hmm. <Affirmative> world <laugh>. There's a lot that has to be done. You know, if we want to think about creating a world that, that we wanna live in and that we want to give to the next few generations, and starting at, okay, this is my biggest impact that I can have this immediate, you know effect on, was very much an an interesting tangible thing to see on the manufacturing level. <Laugh> <laugh>. And from that point, it was very much as well, you know, this is a, a global flooring manufacturer. Over 50 different markets served a lot of folks coming and saying, Hey, we've been hearing about this thing called Embodied carbon. What is this? And how do we address it? So that was, yeah.

Betsy Scott (04:31):

So you jumped a bit from, you know, the, you were in the re responsible investment group at Harvard and you were in the finance sector looking at ESG as an investment. Then you got into, as you say, the supply chain and the manufacturing side, and now you're in the technology side. So how did that happen? And can you tell us a little bit about the genesis of tangible that you so aptly name dropped a minute ago? <Laugh>

Nicole Granath (04:57):

<Laugh>, thank you. I you can't get away without doing a punter two. But <laugh> Yeah. The, the fun part of that is that my co-founder and I met in our first year of undergrad at Harvard in an environmental science public policy class. And we were on a group project together negotiating mock water rights between India and Pakistan. Little did we know that 11 years later she would have this idea. And so she was on the real estate sustainability consulting side and had been working, had gotten a master's in sustainable urban planning in Stockholm, had been living in London. And so we'd lost touch after graduation. We'd been in New York around the same time, and then she moved to Europe. I moved to China. It had been maybe two or three years. And she reaches out and says, Hey, I have this work project that I'd love to run by you <laugh>.

Nicole Granath (05:50):

And she had been at the Better Buildings Partnership in the uk. So they help large consortium of large developers and owners set these net zero goals. And on the operational side, lots of exciting things happening on the development side. Lot of question marks mm-hmm. <Affirmative>, how, where do we, how do we approach this? And so she had been seeing, okay, there are opportunities here for helping folks address this and, and connecting them with these sustainable building materials. Meanwhile, here I am on the building materials side <laugh>. So that was really the, you know, she called me up and within one phone call we got to the end like, do we have to do this together? <Laugh> <laugh>, of course, neither of us had any background in sustainability in software. We came fully from the sustainability and real estate world and very much the like, you know, steeped in the industry. But we're like, we're pretty sure that there needs to be some type of software solution to this. So we've been incredibly lucky to have raised two rounds of fundraising and have partnered with leaders in the space around how do we make sure that we're doing this in a, a way that includes the perspectives of the folks who are, who are trying to tackle this project.

Betsy Scott (07:05):

Right. Awesome. How long has tangible been around?

Nicole Granath (07:08):

November, 2021 is when we started. So we're about two months off of our two year mark <laugh> <laugh> and 1.8 years. Well,

Betsy Scott (07:17):

That's pretty good for two years. So you're still in the development phase of the technology or?

Nicole Granath (07:22):

Yeah, I think we probably will always be developing it. We have now 10 folks total on the team. Okay. Which is really exciting. And we are working with early customers who are giving a ton of feedback and, you know, have been incredible in terms of being market leaders who want to understand their embodied carbon impact. And we went to the market to start actually saying, okay, we're ready for open for business in May mm-hmm. <Affirmative>. And I've just seen an incredible uptick and, and traction in that time. So excited for kind of, you know, driving toward the end of the year and then to see what next year brings as well.

Betsy Scott (08:01):

Awesome. Can you give us, I mean you've done this in some other podcasts and everything, but I think it would be valuable to capture here a snapshot of how tangible is addressing carbon and construction. Like, what are the steps that you're taking to kind of get the right information out of your clients, the right data, and what resources are you sharing with them in turn that can help kind of fuel their, their visibility into what they're doing and really their decision making processes on how they build?

Nicole Granath (08:31):

I think you hit on it exactly that it's, so much of the question revolves around that visibility and that traditionally it's been incredibly difficult for everyone to get all of the information about building materials in, in a given project in one place. That's where we are starting. We are giving a developer a way to say, okay, this is all of the products that are going into my building. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>, obviously it does much easier said than done <laugh>. And so it explains why a lot of industry initiatives so far have been focused on more representative sets of products, but we think that it's incredibly important to have a direct audit trail of these are the, the products that were used, and then this is either the exact e p d, the environmental product mm-hmm. <Affirmative> and the Yeah. Associated embodied carbon with that product. Or this is going to be the closest proxy for that product. And, and documenting that and being incredibly transparent about where any gaps in the either knowledge of the quantities of products or the quality of the, the emissions factors, if you will. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>, the information is

Betsy Scott (09:44):

Perfect. Yeah. We've actually been talking for a while with builders. We, we went to I B S a couple years ago and, and one of our main, we go there every year, but we went there a couple years ago and with the University of Denver and one of the main things that they were working, working with a bunch of students and builders were sponsoring them to go there and asking them to look for things and they were looking for EPDs and not finding very many on the show floor, even from major manufacturers. So I'm hoping that things are started to change. I'm hearing that they have over the last couple of years, but I think that's still a challenge too.

Nicole Granath (10:16):

It is. And that's really, you know, as formerly a manufacturer who was publishing EPDs and, you know, a lot of credit to the company that I was working for. 'cause They had become the first, you know, manufacturer in their category to submit these EPDs back in 2014 with localized data from the mainland China operations. And then when I joined and we refreshed them in 2019 and published the whole new set of ones, it was still very much a conversation in the market with other manufacturers about, you know, I went around with the U S G B C, the organization mm-hmm. <Affirmative> administers lead to various places in the Chinese market explaining to manufacturers like, this is how you go through the process. And we had our consultant there and the third party verifier from ul, and then all of that was buttressed and kind of pulled by the fact that the architects and various, you know, engineers and, and contractors were asking for them to a degree that they hadn't been before. So, right. What I've been seeing and hearing it has really just intensified, which is great, but there are still those areas that have gaps that the whole industry is, is working on, on filling like m e p equipment, anything mm-hmm. <Affirmative>, you know, on the heating, ventilation and air conditioning side of the world, it's, it's pretty tough to get some embodied carbon information. So there are folks that are, that are working on that. Yep.

Betsy Scott (11:38):

So what's your focus to date in terms of building and real, real estate portfolio types? Like what kinds of assets are you, are you capturing?

Nicole Granath (11:48):

Yeah, so we've been really excited because obviously there's a certain amount of, you just won't, won't know until you go out to the market and have conversations with people. And so far our early customers have been really spread across multi-family developers, industrial, the healthcare, higher education sector, hospitality. So it's really anyone in the commercial development sector that we're initially focusing on. And then we've also been really interested to see how the community developer, community <laugh> has <laugh>, the, the set of people who are developing communities have also really recognized the, the need for this type of reporting. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>, you have so many potential impacts when you are, are thinking about designing a an entire community and, and you have the ability to, on a scalable, repeatable basis make mm-hmm. <Affirmative> productions

Betsy Scott (12:43):

Well. Yeah. We, we have a lot of developers that we're connected to that have, they have the housing, they have the retail, they have the, you know, they'll even have relationships with universities and healthcare facilities and sports arenas and things like that. So there's certainly a, a much bigger scale and a whole wider set of assets that they can look at from that perspective. And I would think that they would be judged more harshly because they're taking up more resources and they have access to more land and they have therefore probably a more, a larger impact. Exactly. Collectively in, in the communities that they serve. Now we, on the other hand, so we do work with developers as part of our network, but we are also focused on all the way down to the single family home. And, you know, we're seeing the need really for the data needs to work on all levels because everybody's being required to do this by investors now by more municipalities.

Betsy Scott (13:42):

Now granted, if you're a national builder developer, you're gonna be required to buy bigger entities if you're publicly traded. Yeah. But even the regional builders we're looking at, in order to get access to the land and the financing that they want, and to be part of projects they wanna be part of, they need to be able to do this as well. Yeah. That's really, you know, kind of our impetus for looking at it in a bit more detail. And <crosstalk>, so I mentioned to you mentioned this to you offline, that we've also been working with as the alliance with Green Builder Media and about 50 other representatives of other organizations from raters to building science experts to many manufacturers and home builders and the like, trying to create a set of guidelines that's going to be more relevant to the housing space. Yeah. So you talked about multifamily, which we look at a bit, but we're also looking at that single family home to the low rise residential construction and trying to see how all of that works out, where sometimes the assets are more, it's harder when it's not a building that you retain and you're trying to pass the cost on and the value onto an end consumer through a single family home.

Betsy Scott (14:57):

So we've been trying to, to find resources for people to use on that front. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>, and I've been part of the measurement section as, as you can imagine, this is why I really wanted to talk to you. <Laugh> carbon is huge <laugh>, it's the new energy efficiency, as you said in an article that you guys posted on LinkedIn about embodied carbon and really some parallels between IT and energy efficiency and codes. Yeah. Which I thought was great. We'll share that with people who listen to the podcast. But in the meantime, can you share a couple of key takeaways? 'cause That will, I think, take us into the next thing I wanna talk to you about.

Nicole Granath (15:36):

Definitely. And I think that the way that you are framing the problem and thinking about it is how we've seen a lot of the market direction go as well of people going, oh wait, this is relevant right now to me, whatever type of building I'm going to be sitting, living, occupying in, and whatever type of asset I might be developing, whether it's single, single family homes, whether it's low rise, whether it's the, you know, large high rise multifamily, the folks who are also purchasing or renting these places are starting to ask for this as well. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. And so I saw an interesting stat come across from Zillow just released a survey that I can send as well, but one of my colleagues just sent this to me and said, it says that more than 80% of home shoppers consider climate risks when looking for a new home.

Nicole Granath (16:31):

And so there are these things that are top of mind to people, but I don't think that we always know how to bring them home, per se. Right. Like, how to make relevant to the decisions that you're making. So I think that's where the industry initiatives to really demystify what can be done Right. Embodied carbon basis specifically for building is are, are just so important. So that's really on the, you mentioned the, the legislative landscape mm-hmm. <Affirmative> article that we put out. It's what we've been seeing across the, you know, municipalities or states or even some of the federal jurisdictions within the Inflation reduction act. Canada has a greening government strategy that are trying to find what are the best entry points to address body. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>, one thing that's particularly exciting is Cal Green the building code. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative> just a few weeks ago came out saying that July 1st, 2024, so less than a year from now, all buildings over a hundred thousand square feet and all schools over 50,000 square feet are going to need to comply with embodied carbon reduction pathways. One of the, one of three that they lay out. And I think as we've seen with hers, you know, the home energy rating system in, in California, these are frequently things that start with maybe the large developers who are working on how we address this and then very quickly are things that apply to, to residential developments as well. So there's a lot of conversation <laugh> at the right ground level about, okay, what are the easiest, most streamlined and and efficient ways to, to start actually addressing embodied carbon Cool

Betsy Scott (18:10):

Carbon calculation is still a bit of a wild West <laugh> situation. <Laugh>.

Nicole Granath (18:16):

Yep. <Laugh>.

Betsy Scott (18:17):

And so for the guidelines document that we're working on, we profiled three tools. They're not the only tools that are out there, but we were looking for the most probably in the US and most often used in the US and how those stacked up versus each other. And they were beam e C three and one click l c a. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>. So you guys did a great job of looking at where the legislation is changing. I'm also wondering how familiar you are with the tools and how your approach might be and data that you gather might be different from mm-hmm. <Affirmative>, those tools.

Nicole Granath (18:51):

Yeah. Well first of all, that is a fantastic set of tools and <laugh>, we very much take the approach that this is a, an all hands-on deck <laugh> type of mm-hmm. <Affirmative> effort needed. So each of those is awesome folks to go check them out. And I have a lot of deep knowledge of the e c three ecosystem in particular because was it part of the group of people who got the first flooring products onto E C three starting Oh, nice. <Laugh> yeah, 2019 actually, I guess maybe Yeah. Through the pandemic. And so yeah, spent a, a year and a half really, you know, working closely with that team on this is the information that's needed for manufacturers and this is how we can make sure we provide that transparency and just have a lot of respect for, for the folks there who are trying to make sure that everyone has access to that data.

Nicole Granath (19:45):

And then similarly, beam is was put together very focused on the residential markets, which is incredible and, and much needed by Chris Magwood, who's now at R M I. And if you see, I guess you know, Betsy, you and I are on, on video somewhere in this pile of books behind me or a few of books <laugh> on sustainable building materials and really looking at how some of the decisions around materials can be improved on single family homes. And then lastly on, on the OneClick front, I think this is, you know, a great resource for anyone who's getting requests to do a whole building L C A. We've seen a lot of that come from the European markets and look at kind of that longer 60 year timeframe and across all different types of impacts, not just embodied carbon. So all of those are fantastic solutions in the market.

Nicole Granath (20:39):

Where we are building is very much to be an end-to-end solution for embodied carbon that takes you from what are the decisions that you can make early, early on, all the way through what are the material selections that are actually relevant to you that you can swap out to achieve reductions. So we very much envision partnering with these tools and already, you know, are a supporter of and have an a P I with e C three, and then have a lot of ways that we want to be able to be the repository where you can access a whole bunch of that data, but then have additional tooling on, on top of it.

Betsy Scott (21:19):

Okay. So really to take people through a pathway, a strategic thought process, rather than taking just the designs that you already have and plugging them into the system, you are kind of looking at, well, what's the genesis of your design and where you're building and what could you be thinking about when you're making those decisions, even before you test whether it's gonna have the performance implications that you want. Exactly.

Nicole Granath (21:47):

And that's really where our goal is to almost be embodied carbon planning, <laugh> mm-hmm. <Affirmative> so that you can think about tying it all together. And there are also other fantastic industry initiatives like epic from H D D that help with some of the like super early stage modeling. And I think what we are driving toward is how do we connect a lot of these dots and mm-hmm. <Affirmative> get really easy for someone who's coming in and saying, maybe I have the deep, deep expertise on, you know, the a one to a three global waring potential that makes up all of the, a fair amount of the embodied carbon for these materials. Or maybe I have no idea about this and someone's asking me about embodied carbon and I just wanna go check it out and see if I were to incorporate this into my design process or ask my design partners to do this, where, where the like really easy swaps that we could make and we wanna be able to have the, the support for everyone along that, that spectrum.

Betsy Scott (22:46):

So in essence, for people who are new to it, to be more and more educated consumer of it.

Nicole Granath (22:53):

Exactly. Yeah. Exactly. And that's the piece as well that I don't think, you know, that sometimes, you know, I, I'm sure I also fall victim to of like, yeah, we just need to take action. We need to do this. And it's like, well, can we pause for a moment and get everyone on the same page about what is this and why do we need to be doing this? Right. So a little bit of that, like embodied carbon 1 0 1, Hey, this is how this applies to your building, might not be something you've traditionally thought of is likely to be more of a consideration going forward. How do we get you up to speed and give you the tools to take action in as low friction away as possible? Yeah.

Betsy Scott (23:27):

And then the more people are bought into the why of it, the easier it is for them to get on board to do it, to change what they're doing or Exactly. Or try something new. Yeah, exactly. Absolutely. There's,

Nicole Granath (23:36):

There's been a lot of conversation, obviously in the market around E S G is this very broadly politicized issue or, you know, even the, the concept of climate change is something that's, that can be more of a, a political lightning rod. And I think it doesn't have to be <laugh>. And at the core of it, what we're talking about is how do we design and build in ways that make sure we are living in a space <laugh> that both, you know, isn't going to be poisoning humans and or the, the people and ecosystems that were used to create those materials. And then also that long-term we're maintaining the habitability of the, you know, various environments that, that we live, work, and, and play in. And that's a very core piece to mm-hmm. <Affirmative>. Yeah. I like being on a habitable planet and I like <laugh>, you know, <laugh>, nontoxic air and, and it doesn't have to be as intensely politicized as it is. So I think that keeping it in conversation around the things that actually matter to us as, as humans mm-hmm. <Affirmative> is a really, for me, grounding way to, to make sure that that conversation doesn't have to be particularly a massive lift for anyone who doesn't have a lot of time to, to address it. <Laugh>, it's like, I don't know about this whole e s G thing. <Laugh>

Betsy Scott (24:58):

Yeah. We've, we've been thinking about it in terms of, we like to think about it in terms of having a more resilient business too. 'cause We're always trying to put ourselves in the shoes of the builders and developers that we work with. That if you can't, and we're seeing this already, if you can't move in this direction, you may not be able to get access to land home owners and buyers may not be able to get insurance mm-hmm. <Affirmative> on their homes. So a lot of things I think are changing in that it's become, I think, more of a fact of life issue that how do we do this in such a way that we're not causing any harm. Right. We're success, we're healthy as businesses, our homeowners and and dwellers are healthy and our planet's healthy.

Nicole Granath (25:41):

And I think there's a beautiful positive aspiration underpinning all of this as well, right? Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>, like a lot of the way that we talk about this is let's do a lot less harm, which is where we need to start. And incredibly <laugh> obviously where, you know, the bulk of the work right now is, but if we're sitting back and envisioning the world that we want to be occupying in 2040, like how neat if each of the spaces that we're touching and feeling and interacting with on a daily basis are not just inert or, you know, actively harmful, but are actually giving us back benefits and Right. You know, have these various materials out of which they're, they're being made that can continually be, be used over and over and be part of the, the photosynthesis cycle or some that have seemed a little bit more fantastical <laugh> start to see, see glimmers of in the right.

Betsy Scott (26:37):

When we look under the hood, you know, as we get aspirational and we talk about doing things in the, the E S G space, there's been some concern with some of the existing tools, you know, they provide value in the carbon space, but there's been some concern that the results can be very different. Hmm. Like when you're talking about the same kind of building and even plugging the same data in from one tool to the other. And we had the, the benefit of kind of being a fly on the wall when the University of Denver worked with one of our builders in our network mm-hmm. <Affirmative> and MiTek to take a house they had, 'cause they were really trying to figure out, you know, in Denver they're really being pushed to get to carbon neutrality and this is a high performance builder to begin with mm-hmm.

Betsy Scott (27:21):

<Affirmative>. So they always, they've always looked trying to do the right thing and make sure that the claims that they're giving to their customers are valid. So they wanted to make sure the data was good data. So they ran that through the three tools I mentioned earlier, that house plan and then probably five or six others. And between all of those different tools, the data they got back on the backend was very different. Mm-Hmm. I mean they had a, I have to look at it 'cause I can't remember the numbers offhand, but they had 47 and a half to 103 metric tons of embodied carbon in this one house that they were looking to develop between the tools. That's a huge swing that's double the embodied carbon in one calculator versus the one at the bottom. And you know, everybody else was kind of in between. Yeah. As you're developing this system, you're developing both the kind of the strategic pathway, but you do have the calculator part at the end. Are you surprised to hear that, you know, someone went through the exercise and found this <laugh> and how are you guys thinking about how you ensure your data to make sure that as it's being a requirement mm-hmm. That it's reliable mm-hmm. To the people who are requiring it. So I'm just curious as to what's going through your mind as that part of the development process.

Nicole Granath (28:38):

Definitely. And these are the questions right now that we as an industry are grappling with around how we can start to standardize some of the approaches to measurement and to reporting. No, I'm not surprised <laugh>

Betsy Scott (28:51):

<Laugh> that

Nicole Granath (28:52):

Is very much, you know, I, we saw similar things on the e p D front, right? Where you have, there are so many assumptions baked into all of these ways of making measurements that it is incredibly important that they be third party verified. That they are, you know, compliant to standards. That we as an industry coming together around best practices have determined should be the, the gold standards. And there also will be a fair amount of variability around that. Different folks have tried to address it in different ways. E C three uses some of these like, you know, additional like a bar and whiskers graph to show some of the additional uncertainty around that. And the short answer is we believe very strongly that we need to be directionally correct that having that 47 to 1 0 3 range is helpful based on, you know, where each of those numbers comes from.

Nicole Granath (29:49):

And then can give you information whether it's in that 47 to 103 range versus a 2 75 to 4 25 range mm-hmm. <Affirmative> over time. There are two things that will hopefully drive those ranges more close together so that we can get <laugh> better signals about that directionality. And that I think will be broader consensus around the data sources that we're all pulling from. And then also a broader consensus around what scope should be included in in these various calculations. One way that we're thinking about this and it, the other reason that it doesn't surprise me is that there are some customers that we have who have done their analysis on tangible and are, you know, able to see the direct material specific calculations of this. And then they also were like, oh hey, here are the LCAs that we've completed. Here are the results from these other studies.

Nicole Granath (30:47):

And so they themselves have done almost a mini version of what University of Denver did of like, this is one project and let's see what these different uhhuh scopes capture. But interestingly to them they were looking at it from okay, you know, a whole building L C A that's gonna be looking across 60 years and all of these different impact categories and maybe using more representative products. So that's maybe more useful for thinking about long-term impact or impacts outside of embodied carbon. Then the material specific one that can inform our selection of various materials. Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative> at that decision point. What I see is <laugh> in another, you know, in the future I think there's a lot of space for really level setting across all of those different types of measurement types mm-hmm. <Affirmative> and giving people the view of, hey, this is what's most important to you. You wanna be more focused on the longer term impacts of the building, this is the type of assessment mm-hmm. <Affirmative> that and then actually if you want to be looking at the, you know, direct point in time, this is the type of assessment. But as these regulatory standards come out, I think we're starting to see coalescence around the different mod, like exact modules that are required mm-hmm. <Affirmative> and I suspect that these ranges are, are going to get a lot tighter. <Laugh>

Betsy Scott (32:04):

<Laugh>. Well that's good. You know, I thought it's like the wild west earlier. I think it took about 20 years or so for energy efficiency Yeah. To really be kind of buttoned up. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. I don't think we have 20 years to button up what's going on with carbon <laugh>,

Nicole Granath (32:19):

But we get to be, and we say this all the time, we are very grateful for all of the work that the folks in the operational carbon space have done. Because now we don't have to rebuild that infrastructure. Right. People are like, oh, we understand that. It's not like basically we're gonna benchmark and then we're gonna measure and then we're gonna take action. Action. What if we could just do all of those right now <laugh> rather than spread it out over a seven to, you know, 10 year process. So hopefully on the standard side there's a similar learnings that you know, set of learnings that can be applied.

Betsy Scott (32:51):

Sounds good. So you already addressed the question about E S G being politicized, so we'll skip that. That was nice and natural how you did that. So let's jump back a bit, and this is kind of the last thing I wanted to talk to you about, which as I mentioned earlier, tangible is part of the team behind the latest America at home study concept homes being built in Pittsburgh where I am so excited. The picket fence. Yeah. And the 4 1 2 'cause we like to call things around here, the four oh one two, that's my area code.

Nicole Granath (33:22):

<Laugh> Dennis filled me in <laugh>

Betsy Scott (33:25):

<Laugh>. But so you're working with Dennis from our team Terry from T s T Inc. Others from Dahlin Group who are doing the architecture and tier design and then the builder's, SS m i is the offsite provider. And then Eco Craft Homes is really the brand of how these are going to market to ensure that the homes meet, you know, some of their sustainability goals and you know, with Carbon in particular, can you tell us more about where you are in that process? I know the picket fence, they gave us a little video tour. The picket fence had made it through the factory and was it, I guess, what did they call it? Like the back area that

Nicole Granath (34:02):

Yeah. I don't know where they were, like where they were, had them set up and climbing through the window to, to show us the <laugh>.

Betsy Scott (34:08):

Yeah, it was, it was in, it was outside 'cause it was one they were doing the last, some of the last things that they were doing in the factory setting before they were gonna get ready to ship it. Where are you in that process and how does that kind of fit into almost a little test project for you of, of how what you're doing would apply in a offsite construction and single family sense. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>.

Nicole Granath (34:30):

Mm-Hmm. <Affirmative>. Well, we have been incredibly excited to be working with all of the folks on this project because between the work that you're doing at Housing Innovation Alliance and the, you know, Terry at TST Inc. And the team over at Dahlin are doing around thinking, being very intentional about the design of this across health, wellness, the livability, the, the sustainability for us, it's been an exciting opportunity to nerd out with partners who, who also care about these things, <laugh> <laugh>. And so the, I have to give a massive shout out to our founding researcher Emily. Emily is trained as a mechanical engineer and has just been really pivotal in how we, we've grown our approach to research at tangible and real and making sure that the processes that we have in place are, are grounded in best practice. And so she has been spending some time with the team on the, the Picket Fence project and has mapped the various structures and exteriors.

Nicole Granath (35:37):

I'm looking at the spreadsheet right now, the exterior doors, the floor coverings, the interior and has found the, the specific EPDs, the environmental product declarations that have those embodied carbon numbers associated with them that relate to those particular products used in in creating the picket fence. I think this is a really exciting application for something that, that can be deployed at scale and mm-hmm. <Affirmative> what we will be showing, you know, sometime later in the fall as that is finalized in the tangible platform is, is what the overall impact of the material selections has been. And then I think particularly exciting is as the next project comes online, being able to apply some of the learnings from this one of mm-hmm. <Affirmative>, this is where it stands, which is always the most important first step, let's benchmark, see where we're at, and now look, if we had chosen this material instead of that one, that would be a 37% reduction over here, or this would represent something that's also locally manufactured and we could get that, that reduction as well. So it's right now very much let's measure and we'll see how the, the results pan out from that mm-hmm. <Affirmative>, but then next also is something that I think there's gonna be a lot of opportunity for us all to, to learn and apply.

Betsy Scott (36:55):

Absolutely. We're really interested in seeing what the results are from the first house. I know Pro Builder Magazine is a partner in the second house and they're interested in seeing that too. So looking forward to kind of getting the, the latest update from you and Dennis and Terry and Ryan at Dolan and Eric Newhouse at s m i soon on our live stream and we'll share that as well. And then looking forward to all of the great information that we'll get coming out from you as a result of what you're learning through both of these iterations of the design. So that'll be fascinating. And we've got a lot of people who are very interested in, you know, how things pan out in terms of the modular construction aspects plus the carbon footprint, et cetera. So that, I think that'll be very interesting to see what we learn from that process. But in the meantime, thank you so much for spending some time with me today and introducing me passively to your dog. I don't know if you saw recently, I, when I stepped away for a second, I put my dog back there.

Nicole Granath (37:58):

Yes, yes, yes. I know. My <laugh>, yes. <Laugh>, my dog is the pea has been hanging out in his bed all day long on while I've been on meetings and then he decided that this was the one that he was gonna come up and make his presence <laugh> and quite known. So

Betsy Scott (38:13):

<Laugh>. That's good. That's good. I I love a, I love a similar minded dog lover who you know that they're your colleague at home. Yeah, exactly.

Nicole Granath (38:24):

And he, his main admonition is rest more and drink more water <laugh>. So. Well

Betsy Scott (38:30):

He's all, I would imagine he is all about healthy housing, just, you know, exactly

Nicole Granath (38:35):

Very strongly about the flooring beneath his feed and the, the contents of the Wallboards <laugh>.

Betsy Scott (38:42):

Well thanks so much and I look forward to seeing you online when we do the livestream.

Nicole Granath (38:46):

Likewise. Thanks so much.

Betsy Scott (38:48):

Thanks. Have a good weekend or week.

Nicole Granath (38:51):