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  1. Arboretum Native Plantings Award Letter

    The University of Illinois Arboretum has historically showcased formal displays of annual ornamental plants and selected trees. There is increased interest in developing plots and displays of native plants, especially those that are beneficial to pollinators. This project will introduce a variety of such native plants into several settings at the Arboretum. The Arboretum intends to use the plantings as an outdoor laboratory that will be used for formal and informal education about the role of native plants in provision of ecosystem services such as pollination adn improving soil quality. The experience gained will lay the ground work for future expansion of the concept including large plantings within selected locations and patches of clearly labeled plants that will allow visitors to learn their names and characteristics.
    The plantings will also provide physical examples of how small plantings can be used in personal and commercial landscapes. The use of perennial native plants will help the Arboretum assess the potential to save money and other resources by using more plants that do not have to be repurchased and replanted annually. The native plants along with improved habitat conditions will support a large number of local pollinators and other insect and bird species that are increasingly threatened by loss of habitat, and provide an instructional resource for university classes and local schools.

  2. Funding Deadline

     

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    Apply Now for Funding from the Student Sustainability Committee – Deadline This Sunday!

    The Student Sustainability Committee (SSC) reviews, recommends and funds over $1.1 million in sustainable projects annually that increase environmental stewardship, inspire change, and impact students.  Past projects partially funded by the SSC include the Sustainable Student Farm, the ECE Building, and the Sustainability Living-Learning Community in University Housing.

    The SSC is now accepting funding requests for the Fall 2014 funding cycle of the 2014-2015 academic year.  All projects working toward a goal of improving sustainability at the University of Illinois are encouraged to apply.  Student-led projects are welcome, but must be affiliated with a campus department and have a faculty or staff member as a sponsor.  For full funding criteria or to complete an application, please visit the SSC Website.  Applications are due by 11:59 PM THIS SUNDAY, October 19th for consideration in the Fall 2014 Funding Cycle, and projects will receive notification on whether they are invited to the next step in funding consideration by mid-November.  Projects submitted after this deadline will have consideration deferred to the Spring 2015 funding cycle.

    If you have any questions, please visit the SSC’s website or email Sustainability-Committee@illinois.edu.

    Announcing a new course offered in Spring 2015 -- Monitoring and Evaluating SSC Projects
    Adjunct Professor Warren Lavey is teaching a new class this Spring: ENVS 299 (Independent Studies of Environmental Topics) (2 credits, meeting Wednesdays 4:00 pm - 4:50 pm)

    Enrollment limited to three juniors, seniors, or graduate students involved with the Student Sustainability Committee (present or past members or participants in a working group)

    Stronger processes for monitoring and evaluating the performance of projects will help the SSC learn from and communicate the benefits of its efforts.  This course will teach the tools for financial, environmental and other assessments, and apply them in developing information useful for the SSC's current and future work. Students will research and submit two 10-page reports -- one evaluating the performanceof a project funded several years ago, and the other analyzing the monitoring provisions and expected impacts in a pending proposal.  Each student will work with the SSC to select important projects to research.  Students will interview staff involved with the projects, collect data, research the performance of similar projects, and develop a customized framework for monitoring and evaluation.

    Enrollment in this course is limited and students will be selected by the professor.  If you would like to apply, please download and complete the application at http://ssc.union.illinois.edu/bootstrap/is_application.pdf.

    Please submit via email by November 1 to lavey@illinois.edu.  Applicants will be informed of the selections by November 10.

     

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  3. Fall 2014 SSC meetings kick-off

    Student Sustainability Committee Meeting

    Union, Leadership Center Conference Room

    September 8, 2013

    5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

     

    1. Determining Executive Positions 5:00-5:10

    a. Chair

    b. Vice Chair Internal and External

    c. Communications

    d. Treasurer

     

    2. Working Group Formation and Chair Selection 5:10-5:25

    a. Energy

    b. Water

    c. Food/Waste

    d. Land

    e. Transportation

    f. Education

     

    3. Monitoring and Evaluation 5:25-5:35

     

    4. Subcommittee Formation and Chair Selection 5:35-5:45

    a. Executive

    b. Finance

    c. Bylaws

    d. Marketing

     

    5. Bylaws update 5:45-5:50

     

    6. Information meeting 5:50-6:00

     

    7. Adjournment

  4. Allerton Park Solar Array-Phase II

    Allerton Park already has a solar array located near its Visitors’ Center. The second phase of the Allerton Park Solar Array project involves working with a Learning In Community (LINC) class to construct a second ground-mounted solar recharge array. This second phase builds on the success of the existing array with the adjacent construction of an additional 60 panels. The design of the Phase 2 array utilizes an innovative floating foundation system that allows for portability of the array if necessary. The total array provides 14.7kW of peak power, which translates to a projected annual output of 14,653 kWh(about 15-20% of total apCAP solar goals). Power at the panel and array level can be monitored remotely and be publicly viewable via an online dashboard which displays the impact of the solar power contribution in terms of energy equivalents: gallons of gasoline, light bills, tons of coal, barrels of crude oil, and planted trees.

  5. Campus community Garden Fostering Sustainable Food

    The Campus Community Garden (CCG) will be designed by students, built, and planted on the grounds of the University of Illinois Turf Farm. The CCG will look and feel like a typical allotment-style community garden, but the management of the garden will be focused on undergraduate learning opportunities. To this end, half of the individual garden plots (24 raised beds) will be made available to students for independent gardening activities and experimentation. The other 24 raised bed garden plots will be used for teaching, demonstration, and outreach on urban agriculture, and they will also serve as important examples of successful production methods for student gardeners.

  6. Coffee Ground Repurposing

    The Coffee Ground Repurposing Project, spearheaded by University Housing, seeks to create a coffee ground recycling network on the University of Illinois campus. Rather than discarding used coffee grounds and sending them to a landfill, University Housing will offer used coffee grounds from the dining halls to the public for composting and re-use. The project has two main goals. First, the project will further minimize the amount of food items being directed to the landfill from University Dining Halls. Second, and more importantly, the program will be an educational tool to demonstrate to UIUC students how nearly every item they dispose of has an alternative use as opposed to being sent to the landfill.

  7. New ECE Building Project Solar Panels

    The new Electrical and Computer Engineering building (New ECE building) will be operational starting the fall semester of 2014, and will be a unique green building on the University of Illinois campus. It is designed to be the most energy efficient engineering building in the world and is targeting LEED platinum certification, the highest rating for efficiency. With the full planned solar energy complement, the building is projected to achieve net zero energy status. The facility will be one of the two largest net-zero energy buildings in the United States. It will be a facility that supports all its own energy needs – on average over each year – leaving no carbon or fossil consumption footprint. Although the ECE building design itself is intended to achieve LEED Platinum certification, the energy objectives go far beyond this rating to true energy sustainability.

  8. Element House at the Energy Farm

    The 2007 Solar Decathlon house is coming home to Champaign Urbana to a permanent foundation at the University Energy Farm. Funds have been secured for its transportation, placement on a permanent foundation, utility hook ups, and inspection of current systems to ensure safe working order. Funding from the Student Sustainability Committee will defray the costs of upgrading the systems and bringing the house up to code. To meet these goals, the solar array will need to be redesigned and reconstructed; the electrical, lighting, and HVAC systems will need to be updated; and new monitoring equipment will need to be installed. Ultimately, the goal of this project is to have a fully functioning net negative energy residential model home. Student groups are assuming the responsibility for all design, construction, and monitoring tasks as they are able.

  9. Energy Shade Curtains-Phase III

    Energy shade curtains have many benefits for greenhouses including optimization of natural light reaching the crop canopy and reductions in heating inputs and electricity for cooling equipment and lighting. This is the 3rd phase of funding provided to the Plant Care Facility (Turner Hall Greenhouses) for curtain installation and programming, and 7 additional curtains were installed at a total cost of $71,000. Meters installed in rooms with and without curtains continue to track energy savings, and have shown an overall 50% heating use reduction, 30% electricity use reduction, and 30% water use reduction (for cooling) during fall and winter months.

  10. Farm and Fiber

    Fresh Press, in collaboration with the Sustainable Student Farm (SSF) and the Woody Perennial Polyculture (WPP) site, are aiming to grow student opportunities through individual and collaborative research and public engagement efforts. The money requested in the Farm and Fiber grant will contribute to the acquisition of walk-in coolers, perennial crops, bee hives/equipment, additional paper dry box, a bailer/hay rake, and a bale shredder blower. This equipment will benefit each project at the SSF by increasing farm production and allowing for increased agricultural fiber yield, leading to a growth in paper production. This increased capacity will triple production capacity and allow greater opportunity for university paper commissions and student workshops in Fresh Press facilities at South Studios.

  11. SECS Re_home landscaping

    In 2011, students at faculty from the University of Illinois develop the Re_Home for the Solar Decathlon Competition. As a result of a new landscaping and beautification plan, the Re_Home has found a permanent place on campus. In maintaining a “sustainability ideology”, the landscaping plans for this project are geared toward sustainability with the use of native, low maintenance plants as well as vegetables, edible herbs, and fruit trees. The Re_Home is an exemplary embodiment of sustainability and its permanent home will serve as a showcase in sustainability education.

  12. Composites in Aviation

    Student Aircraft Builders (SAB) is an organization dedicated to teaching students from all across campus how to work together as a team to successfully construct a flyable airplane. The goal of the Composites in Aviation project has two phases. The first phase constructs a quarter scale glider powered by alternative energy. The second phase graduates from a model to a full-sized glider. Through the use of composite materials and an innovate design from an aerospace engineer, the finished glider will exemplify the future of more fuel-efficient long-range flight.

  13. Sheltered Bicycle Parking

    Providing safe and convenient locations for bicycle parking is one of the key ways the University can support increased bicycle ridership and greener commuting. The goal of this project is to construct a secure, sheltered bicycle parking area for students, faculty, and staff at the Chemical and Life Sciences Building and the Roger Adams Laboratory. These parking structures are modeled after the sheltered bicycle parking currently located at the Ikenberry Commons.

  14. Solar Powered Cookstoves Funding Letter

    The Solar Powered Cook Stoves project is an innovative effort to implement cook stoves powered by solar energy. The stoves associated with this project will utilize innovative new technology to overcome some of the key limitations of current solar cooking. Specifically, they will offer high-temperature cooking and grilling while in use while also storing energy for cooking at night or during other periods of reduced sunlight. Once completed, these stoves will provide a clean source for cooking and grilling that does not use fire, gas, wood, or charcoal.

  15. Sustainable Agriculture Food System Tomato Processing

  16. Krannert Art Museum LED Lamp Retrofit

    The Krannert Art Museum approached the Student Sustainability Committee with an immediate need to improve their lighting profile. This specific LED Lamp Retrofit project would switch from incandescent lamps to LED lamps in the Noel Gallery and the East Galleries. Given its variety of available lamps, its efficiency values, and its non-UV characteristics, LED lamps are an ideal solution for these galleries at Krannert Art Museum.

  17. Field to Fuel-Biomass

    This project involves purchasing and installing a biomass boiler at the Energy Farm, in order to heat a research greenhouse using Miscanthus that is grown on the Energy Farm. The hope for the project is that a successful pilot will pave the way toward expanded use of biomass heating on our campus in order to reduce our campus greenhouse gas emissions.

  18. Recycling on the Quad

    The intent of this project is to improve the waste process in and around the Quad. The first step will be merging the existing 40 stand-alone refuse containers with twenty new recycling bins to create a total of 30 combined waste/recycling stations. All containers will be cleaned, painted, and color-coded to clearly indicate that one bin is for recycling and one is only for landfill-directed refuse. In addition to the expanded bin options, signage will be placed in the buildings on the Quad to launch the new standards and clarify what can be recycled. To measure the impact from this project, waste audits will be conducted before and after the proposed changes.

  19. Zero Waste Event at State Farm Center

    “Zero Waste” is a common term that refers to the desired outcome rather than any expectation. The goal of the Zero Waste Event at State Farm Center as stated to the SSC was to change to the habits of fans, starting with a single basketball game as part of the national Recyclemania competition. The desired outcome is for the State Farm Center to move from a single bin system to dual bin system. The new system will be accompanied with new signage for clarification.

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