USGBC-LA Launches 3rd ‘Net Zero Accelerator’ Cohort to Speed Viable Building Tech into Market, and Delivers Pilot Opportunities

Accepting Applications for the Net Zero Accelerator through April 1

LOS ANGELES (March 16, 2021) The Net Zero Accelerator (NZA) application period is open through April 1st for pilot-ready technologies in the building sector. The NZA helps position the selected technologies for success by accelerating their market entry throughout the greater Los Angeles region, in conjunction with marquee partners and via guidance, introductions, and pilot placement. The initiative, created and managed by the U.S. Green Building Council-Los Angeles Chapter (USGBC-LA), is seeking net zero building technologies focused this year primarily in building decarbonization (materials & operations), occupant wellness for all building types (commercial, institutional, multi-family, affordable housing, etc.), sustainable infrastructure (conduits and systems serving the built environment), and clean construction (waste & efficiency). Applications are now being accepted. (On March 17, a webinar will also explain the program and discuss the building technology industry – sign up HERE.)

Believed to be the only net zero accelerator in the world, the NZA focuses on removing the biggest barriers to viable building technology reaching the market. With the second cohort completed in December and a signature Demo Day event in January of this year, the first two NZA cohorts have initiated over 45 active technology pilot projects among the 30 cohort companies over the past two years, providing innovative technology solutions to over 25 building owners and managers.

“We’ve established a phenomenal community around innovation in real estate here in the LA region and look forward to bringing in another cohort of global startups to integrate with our local leaders to address delivering net zero solutions that can make an impact today,” states Ben Stapleton, USGBC-LA Executive Director.

The selected property-focused technologies (aka proptech) can come from anywhere in the world, with the qualification of being “pilot ready” and/or commercially available solutions that help make zero carbon, zero energy, zero water, and zero waste buildings a reality for the region today. During the six-month accelerator, they have multiple opportunities to connect with potential investors, advisors and pilot hosts, including:

  • Net Zero Accelerator Demo Day, featuring 3-minute live and interactive demonstrations. The event also hosts a panel discussion with proptech investors (last year included NZA partners JLL Spark, Fifth Wall, Navitas Capital and LACI), and a virtual Expo Hall.
  • Participation in USGBC-LA’s annual Municipal Green Building Conference & Expo (MGBCE) as well as the Net Zero Conference (NZ21).
  • Individualized guidance from USGBC-LA Executive Director Ben Stapleton and Accelerator Director Colin Mangham, who collectively have guided the success of more than 150 startups (generating $300M+ in venture funding).

The one-on-one guidance, introductions and Demo Day events have resulted in pilot project placements with key players in the Southern California region. Kilroy Realty Corp. is doing a pilot with Keewi, which uses the power of data from electrical plugs and outlets to help optimize workplace energy use. The Accelerator is also working with California State University, Dominguez Hills, to deploy Blue Box, which uses an innovative process that harnesses the power of enzymes to clean HVAC coils, improving energy use and indoor air quality of facilities ranging from hospitals, skyscrapers, data centers, and even homes.

“I’ve guided the success of hundreds of entrepreneurs, and I can say that the caliber and commitment of the people and companies this program engages is truly top shelf,” states Colin Mangham, NZA Director. “Plus, the focus on real world pilots getting vital solutions right to market makes our work all the more fulfilling. I’m excited to guide and learn from this next group of green-minded change makers.”

For more information on the Net Zero Accelerator (the companies, being a pilot location, being an advisor or supporter), visit or contact Colin Mangham at colin@usgbc- For information on USGBC-LA, please contact Ben Stapleton at or Fernanda Zuin at


About U.S. Green Building Council-Los Angeles

Founded in 2002, USGBC-LA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization committed to creating a prosperous and sustainable future within one generation. Our mission is to accelerate all aspects of sustainability in the built environment by delivering access to knowledge, resources, recognition and networking. Learn, Share and Lead Green. (

Current partners in the NZA include (alpha): Blue Bear Capital, BuroHappold Engineering, CA State University at Dominguez Hills, California State University Northridge, City of Los Angeles, Community Corporation of Santa Monica, Fifth Wall Ventures, Frederick Fisher and Partners, Gensler, HDR, Hudson Pacific Properties, Integral Group, Kilroy Realty Corporation, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation, Metropolitan Water District, Momentum, NRDC, NREL, Rexford Industrial, Skanska, Southern California Edison, Southern California Gas Company, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, UCLA, and Vanir Construction.