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All Project Updates


  1. Go-Live Project Date

    Associated Project(s): 

    The energy dashboard for UIUC was launched Monday, December 5, 2011. The site provides data and information to students and staff about selected University building's energy consumption rate.  Real-time energy use for electricity, heating (steam), and cooling (chilled water) are displayed.

  2. FY12 Projects Selected

    Associated Project(s): 

    These projects were selected for FY12 RLF funding, in this priority order:


    Lighting Retrofits

    RLF Requested: $1,500,000

    This project is part of a campus-wide effort to upgrade all T12 fluorescent light fixtures to yield improved lighting quality for the users while decreasing operating and maintenance expenses.  This project involves energy-saving upgrades to lamps and ballasts of existing fluorescent light fixtures in (53) campus buildings.  We are requesting funding in the amount of $1.5 million, although the work is scalable and any funding amount can be successfully applied.  The total campus need for lighting retrofit is approximately $3.1 million.  Partial grant reimbursement of $800,000 is available.


    Occupancy Sensors

    RLF Requested: $500,000

    This project will install occupancy sensors for control of lighting and HVAC in approximately (30) campus buildings.  As a result, energy use will be decreased up to 30% in affected areas.  This is an expansion and continuation of projects in the past two years, which have focused on installation of occupancy sensors in student classrooms. We are requesting funding in the amount of $500,000, although the work is scalable and any funding amount can be successfully applied.  The total campus need for occupancy sensors is over $6.5 million.  Partial grant reimbursement of up to $40,000 is available.


    LED Exit Signs

    RLF Requested: $250,000

    This project will replace existing exit signs with efficient LED fixtures in approximately (14) campus buildings.  As a result, energy use will be decreased, life safety systems will operate more reliably, and maintenance needs will decrease dramatically.  This is a continuation of projects funded in FY07 and FY08. We are requesting funding in the amount of $250,000, although the work is very scalable and any funding amount can be successfully applied.  Partial grant reimbursement of up to $7,000 is available.



  3. Energy Dashboard at BIF

    Associated Project(s): 

    College of Business students have been competing to come up with ideas for how to utilize the Energy Dashboard at the Business Instructional Facility. One of the recommendations they have developed is a real-time energy use display.

  4. Watt Meters for audit teams

    I think we could probably borrow SEDAC's--you can contact Andy Robinson at the Smart Energy Design Assistance Center("Robinson, Andrew Ansel" <>). Last year, we worked out a memorandum of understanding to use a blower door from SEDAC's affiliate, the Building Research Council, so this shouldn't be a problem. You can mention that. I can also contact him, as I used to work there.  - Amy Allen

    On Tue, Nov 8, 2011 at 3:28 PM, Thomas Ferrarell <> wrote:

    I've been unable to get watt meters through cheap means. SECS is still unsure where theirs are, and the library has only 2 rentable and they have both been checked out till the 19th. I want to ask if you think this is still a valuable task to include, that is: measuring the energy usage of items like computers, mini-fridges, personal microwaves/toasters/coffee makers/water heaters, and using the data to suggest a change in behavior. If so, would you be opposed to buying 6 watt meters for teams to use?

    They seem to be around $25 per meter 


    and I could pick them up at radio shack. They may or be helpful in the future if this project continues.

    What do you think? Or do you know of other means to obtain meters more cheaply?


  5. training audit team leaders

    I had a big problem trying to get the building contacts and all the teams on the same page to meet. And most of the building contacts were being very unresponsive. So I changed up the plan a little. I'll be meeting with the team leaders and any other members who can attend at the Intensive English Institute (since they were being the most accessible) and will be training them all at once. 

    I went to the buildings that weren't responding and sat down with the contacts, a few are allowing me to key the teams in after 5pm/weekends to avoid interruptions and help them finish quicker. Only 1 building of the 9 has been able to elude me, I'm going to try again tomorrow. 2 others said they could get back to me by wednesday. 

    A few of the teams expressed willingness to work the week after thanksgiving break too if necessary to complete all 9 buildings.


  6. Update from Tom

    This week was a setback. I'm trying to get availability schedules from the building contacts to give to the students so they know when they can and can't be in certain rooms as it was expressed as a concern from a few responders about interruptions. I asked if we could have access on the weekends and/or during after hours to make it easier, a few are open to it. Only 1 of the teams set up a meeting with me this week, the others have said they are available next week. I cancelled the meeting with the one team because the building I assigned them did not let me know when I could do a demonstration there. I wasn't comfortable with just barging in and poking around. There is still 2 weeks left till thanksgiving, and if these contacts decide to follow through and allow us in after closing or on the weekends, I'm very certain all the buildings will get done. I think the students are having trouble organizing when they can meet during normal work hours because thats also normal class hours. I'm in contact with all the team leaders and I'm doing my best to stay organized with their times. I'm following up with the building contacts today, and monday to try and push them to get me the availability schedules. If they are still taking too long to respond, I can gauge which teams will be willing to work after thanksgiving break if necessary.

  7. Sustainability Week 2011 website

    Associated Project(s): 

    2011 Sustainability Week
    November 1-4

    The Office of Sustainability will be hosting the 2011 Sustainability Week on November 1-4. There will be a variety of exciting campus and community events planned throughout the week.

    There will be a poster session on November 1-3 from 12-6pm at the Activities and Recreation Center (ARC) Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign. We invite University of Illinois faculty, staff, and students working on sustainability education, research, outreach, and operations to present a poster or art display at this open session.

    There is no charge to present and you do not need to staff your poster during the session. We sincerely hope you will participate this year.

    Tuesday, November 1st:

    10am-2pm: Free Bike Repair: Volunteers will be on hand to evaluate your bike and do simple maintenance. North of Henry Admin Building on the Quad

    12pm: Garden walk with Diane Anderson, Research and Education Specialist in Crop Sciences and Michele Guerra, Director of Wellness Center: The walk features Red Oak Rain Garden, Illini Grove, Idea Garden, Sunken (Hartley) Garden, Japan House Gardens, new Arboretum trails.The group will meet at the main entrance of the Campus Recreation Center East Building, 1102 W. Gregory Drive.

    12-6pm: Sustainability Poster & Art session: ARC Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    4-6pm: Sustainable Student Farmer's Market: The farmer's market will provide fall produce for sale from our student farm on the University of Illinois campus. ARC Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    6pm: Recyclables Costume Contest: Use your imagination and come up with a homemade costume out of recyclable materials. Prizes will be awarded. Refreshments following. ARC Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    6:30pm: Latrelle Bright, Director, performer and arts advocate in the Department of Theatre will be performing a solo performance piece "matter": Graduate Dance Center, East Art Annex 2, 1206 W. Peabody Drive, Urbana


    Wednesday, November 2nd:

    12-6pm: Sustainability Poster & Art session: ARC Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    1:30-3:30pm: "iCAP Forum" open house: A review and progress report of the University's Climate Action Plan, originally signed May 2010. Participants will be able to provide feedback, suggestions, and comments. Illini Union, 1401 W. Green Street, Urbana, Rooms B&C

    4pm: Quad walk with Chancellor Wise: The walk will feature sustainability projects on the quad.Michele Guerra, Director of the Wellness Center will be leading the walk. The group will meet outside at the south entrance of the Illini Union, 1401 W. Green Street, Urbana.*This is an “approved event” for civil service employees.  Employees may attend, without loss of pay or having to charge a benefit, with prior supervisory approval and operations permitting.*

    6:30-9:30pm: CyclingSavvy traffic cycling course with Gary Cziko and Carl Stewart: ARC Auditorium, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    Thursday, November 3rd:

    11am-1pm: Sustainable Student Farmer's Market: The farmer's market will provide fall produce for sale from our student farm on the University of Illinois campus. 57 North, Ikenberry Dining Hall, 301 E. Gregory Drive, Champaign

    *Bookstore remote sales stations selling books related to sustainability

    12-6pm: Sustainability Poster & Art session: ARC Winter Garden, 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign

    1-3pm: Facilities & Services presentations about Utility Rates, Net-Zero Buildings, and Campus Planning: Illini Union, 1401 W. Green Street, Urbana, Room B

    4-5:30pm: Green Career Panel with Chris Pyke, Vice President Research at USGBC.  Join Chris and other professionals in the green industry to discuss recent and future trends in this growing career path.  Other participants include: Bart Hagston, Environmental Sustainability Manager at City of Urbana, Lacey Rains Lowe, Planner at City of Champaign, Wayne Wargo, Site Director at Abbott Nutrition, and Cassie Carroll at Illinois Green Business Association: Asian American Cultural Center, 1210 W. Nevada Street, Urbana

    4:30-8pm: Dining Services 8th Annual Chef's Challenge: This year’s event will be a mystery box theme featuring proteins provided by the Meat Sciences Lab.  They will also be providing a pantry to each team to cook with featuring local products.  There will be six teams competing from Catering, PAR, IKE, LAR, ISR, and Busey.  Each team consists of a chef/coach and two full time dining employees.Ikenberry Dining Hall multipurpose room, 301 E. Gregory Drive, Champaign

    7pm: Chris Pyke, Vice President Research, U.S. Green Building Council: “Accelerating Green Building Market Transformation with Information Technology" will be speaking at Newmark Hall, room 1310, Stoughten Street, Urbana ** Chris Pyke is part of the Sustainable Innovations Seminar Series, a collaboration between the University of Illinois and ERDC-CERL-CASI**:

    Friday, November 4th:

    2:30-3:30pm: Students Sustainability Chat with Chancellor Wise: As part of the Chancellor’s listening and learning tour the sustainability related RSO’s have been invited to give short presentations.  There will also be time for questions and answers. University YMCA, Latzer Hall

    Shoe Donation:
    The ARC and CRCE will be collecting shoes throughout the week to donate to local charities. Please stop by one of the locations below.

    ARC - 201 E. Peabody Drive, Champaign, IL 
    CRCE - 1102 W. Gregory Drive, Urbana, IL 

    We look forward to seeing you at Sustainability Week!


    Co-sponsored by: Campus Recreation, Facilities & Services, Illini Union, University Housing, and the Wellness Center.

  8. draft charge letter for teams

    see attached first draft

    Also Morgan,
    I forgot to copy you for a couple e-mails with Eva Sweeney. We just met today at 1pm, she had some good input. The most important was probably that the lighting retrofit project has already done lighting assessments for all the buildings on campus, she said she can send them to me once I let her know what buildings we were planning on doing. I guess they are upgrading all flourescents from T-12 to T-8 bulbs. So for the sake of not duplicating information we could remove checklist items: count total number of lights, and note wattage used by each light. But she did suggest looking at exterior lighting: if they are working, if they are bright enough, if there are dark areas that require more lighting (for safety), and what type of lighting it is. She also suggested to think about where occupancy sensors could be used.

    I'm going to meet with Dean at 2:30 today to go over the checklist again as well.

  9. to do list for Tom

    Hi Tom,

    Amy Allen will be our contact with the SSC this year.  She and I are sitting in my office, and sending you this email about first steps. Please do the following, and let us know if you have questions.

    1)      Summarize the history from last year.  DUE 9/12/11

    a.       Ask James Hoffer to give you the contact information from each of the five teams last year.

    b.      Ask James for the documentation of what they were told to accomplish for the $500. - There is a concern that the work completed was not the work requested, and therefore the funding is not approved yet.  If we can get details of what James told the groups they had to do for the funds, then we could compare their final reports with the expectations.

    c.       Ask James for the copies of their final submittals. - The actual reports from the teams may have had additional information, not just what was on the small excel files I have seen.  Please get a copy of those excel files, and any other materials the teams provided to James last spring.  Did they use the sample assessment form from the Training Manual?

    d.      Make a list of all the buildings they did, and note if any of them do not need additional data gathering.

    e.      Write a brief opinion, based on your data gathering: did the teams do what they were supposed to do for the money?

    2)      Finalize the to do items for each team for each building.  Write a charge letter for the teams.  DUE 9/30/11 - but get a draft by 9/19/11

    a.       Take the to-do list you created from James' manual, with Dean's notes about the F&S shop that would handle it.  Remove the items that
    are not on our list of selected items to review.

    b.      This is the list of selected items to review, per our notes this summer: "We're going with electronics, lighting, faucet aerators and running toilets, and weather stripping for student tasks."

    c.       Draft a charge letter for the teams, based on the to do list. We can talk about this more once you are ready to dig in.  Basically, this needs to document what the teams have to do in order to earn the money.  We agreed to give them $150 per building.

    3)      Solicit 4-7 teams. DUE 9/30/11 - for asking them in the first place...

    a.       Take a look at who worked with James last year, and ask them if they want to participate this year.  You can let them know that the process is being revised, and you can try to avoid the question about the funding from last year.

    b.      (If they want more details about last year's money, tell them you will ask me.  Then send me an email and copy them.)

    c.       Reach out to other RSOs that may want to participate this year. For starters there is a huge list of RSOs on the Illini Union's website. You can grab president emails from that site somehow, and send a big email, or you could pick and choose RSO's that you think would be interested.  Amy can also give you suggestions.

    d.      Draft an email explaining this opportunity.  Amy, Dean, and I will review the email before you send it.

    We will have plenty more to do after this part.  We will need to hold a meeting with all the teams, Dean, Amy, you, and me.  We will need to identify which buildings each team will review, and a process for evaluating their reports such that they can be approved for the funding. We will need to get estimates of the costs, so the teams can prioritize the work to do based on the funding from Dean's office.

    It would be good to make a networked folder for all these materials, if James didn't already create one.  We really need more organization this
    time, and I have every confidence that you can take care of that. 

    Please send me and Amy your schedule.  We would also both like to be copied whenever you send any emails about this program.  Let us know if
    you have any questions!!!