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Michael Bendewald



Michael Bendewald is a Manager on RMI’s Buildings Team. He leverages his practical understanding of energy efficient, smart, and healthy buildings to enhance real estate analysis and decision-making techniques. He currently leads the market delivery of the RMI practice guide on valuing energy efficiency and sustainability retrofits. As part of this effort, Michael develops strategic partnerships with trade associations, real estate product and service companies, and real estate owners and occupiers. Michael has been trained in corporate real estate portfolio management through CoreNet Global, the world’s premier resource for corporate real estate executives and managers.


Since September of 2008, Michael has contributed to and led RMI projects and programs for advancing resource efficiency in commercial and residential buildings. He helped develop Factor Ten Engineering educational material (www.10xe.org) and led the development of Green Footstep, an online carbon analysis and goal-setting tool to inform building design decisions (www.greenfootstep.org). In graduate school Michael researched the effectiveness of sustainable building rating systems.


Select RMI Projects 

Advised partners on portfolio energy retrofit strategies and presented to company executives:

  • Built a business case for AT&T to invest $380 million in building energy retrofits over 7 years
  • Recommended investment options for Kaiser Permanente to reduce CO2 emissions 30% by 2020
  • Developed a retrofit financial analysis approach for the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) that uses “societal cost” metrics


  • Master of Science in Architectural Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder, 2009
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Saint John’s University (MN), 2003

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • CoreNet Global
  • Urban Land Institute (ULI)
  • U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)

Selected Publications & Conference Papers


Authored Blog Posts

September 12 A Necessary Low-Carbon Development Strategy for Chinese Buildings Buildings
April 28 Report Release: An Investor’s Guide to Calculating and Presenting Deep Retrofit Value Buildings
November 11 New RMI-CoreNet Global Report: 11 Practical and Profitable Strategies for Net-Zero Energy Real Estate Portfolios Buildings
June 19 How Coca-Cola is Tapping into Next-Generation Energy Management Buildings
April 10 Creating Better Buildings Buildings
January 22 RMI Releases Deep Retrofit Value Practice Guide Buildings
December 4 How Retrofits Can Reduce the Cost of Healthcare Buildings
November 4 Reinventing Buildings Buildings
June 28 Sustainability Fatigue, Disruptive Innovation, and the Flourishing Enterprise: RMI Chats with Corporate Sustainability Expert Chris Laszlo (Part 2) General
June 27 Sustainability Fatigue, Disruptive Innovation, and the Flourishing Enterprise: RMI Chats with Corporate Sustainability Expert Chris Laszlo (Part 1) General
April 4 How Real Estate Energy Managers Can Leverage Big Data Right Now Buildings
March 14 Trial By (Reinventing) Fire: Emerging Lessons from RMI’s Portfolio Energy Retrofit Program Buildings
October 17 Discovering “Green Gold” in Indianapolis General
February 22 Deep energy retrofits are better for the world than new buildings General
December 22 Pushing Energy-efficient Retrofits Closer to the Tipping Point General
July 21 Chicago can seize opportunity for deep energy retrofits General
June 15 Can “Green” Buildings have Negative Health Effects? General
March 17 New Tool Helps Portfolio Owners Prospect for Profitable Retrofits General
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