Charlie Fletcher is the founder and Executive Vice President at Mesa Energy Systems in Irvine, California. Recognizing the need for high-caliber contractors in California’s growing construction industry, he founded Mesa in 1983 and played an integral role in the company’s growth from a small business with a solid reputation into a forward-looking, best-in-class service contractor. As CEO and Senior Vice President, Charlie guided the company through its 1999 merger with EMCOR and the ensuing expansion of its capabilities and resources.
Charlie has worked in the HVAC for more than 40 years, including serving as operations manager and sales engineer, in addition to his time leading Mesa. He earned his bachelor’s in mathematics at the State University of New York, Cortland. He holds a California contractor’s license and is a member of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), the Association of Electrical Engineers (AEE), the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA), the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), the International Facilities Managers Association (IFMA), the Mechanical Contractors Association (MCA), and the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association (SMACNA). He is a LEED Accredited Professional and has recently joined the Advisory Committee for The California Commissioning Collaborative.
Host John Sheff speaks with Charlie Fletcher, the founder and Executive Vice President at Mesa Energy Systems about current and expected innovations in energy efficiency. Their conversation covers such topics as Danfoss Turbocor™ oil-free compressors, bipolar ionization air filtration, reducing office spaces, load-modifying resource technology, and more.
- Mesa was an early adopter of Danfoss Turbocor™ oil-free compressors, for both new and retrofit systems.
- In many cases, systems retrofit with Turbocor technology would cut operation costs by up to a third.
- Coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses, schools, hospitals, and more are looking for ways to make indoor air safer. Mesa’s solution is bipolar ionization, a new technology.
- Public institutions and large corporation are much more concerned about improving indoor air quality than owners of small buildings (under 100K people).
- To properly filter air, it needs to be kept moving. Conversely, to keep energy efficiency high, equipment cannot run continuously.
- To reconcile this juxtaposition, Mesa is looking into using heat recovery chillers, heat pumps, and other ways to recirculate air.
- While many businesses are looking for ways to have employees return to in-person working, doing so has environmental and productivity consequences.
- Many people commute to work alone in their car; working from home eliminates the CO2 emitted from said commute.
- While some employees will do better working in-person, others are more productive working remotely and being forced back to the office will negatively affect their output.
- Some businesses will choose to reduce their office space and continue to have some employees work from home.
- One solution to help buildings be more energy efficient is load-modifying resource technology.
- Load-modifying resources include things like solar panels, battery storage, electric car chargers, HVAC controls, and modern air conditioning systems.
- Load-modifying resources work to shift the times of peak energy use.
- Charlie gives the example that California has so much solar power that peak energy use has shifted from 4 PM to 9 PM.
- District energy, where an HVAC system is spread throughout several buildings, is likely part of the future.
- Energy services agreements allow building owners to upgrade their systems and have a standing maintenance plan. The upgrades and regular servicing would ensure greater energy efficiency, which would lower operating costs—and as long as they see benefit from these agreements, the cost of said agreements can be passed onto the tenants.
- These agreements could help building owners improve their buildings without taking on additional costs.
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