Cara Carmichael

Principal, Buildings Program | Rocky Mountain Institute

Cara Carmichael is a Principal with Rocky Mountain Institute’s buildings practice where she leads RMI’s grid interactive buildings work. Cara drives critical research around demand flexibility and the value proposition for building owners to adopt grid interactive buildings and market models to solutions. She has a depth of experience in zero carbon and deep energy retrofits in the federal and commercial building sectors. Highlights of her work include creating best practices to achieve zero over time, negotiating one of the first net zero energy commercial leases in the U.S., leading the design and construction for two of RMI’s net zero energy offices and guiding the GSA to double their historic energy savings using performance contracting.


Cara Carmichael co-leads the Pathways to Zero initiative at RMI which is catalyzing early movers in the buildings industry on a path to—or beyond—zero carbon buildings, by working with individual buildings, districts, cities and portfolios.