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  1. iSEE New Green Office and Event Certifications

    I hope everyone had a restful spring break, welcome back and congrats to our newest recipients of the Green Office and Green Event Certification Programs!

    -Green Office: University of Illinois Police Department, Gold (35 sustainable actions pledged!), Recertified March 2023

    -Green Events: 

    -Chancellor's Office for Special Events University Scholars Reception, Certified March 2023

    -Chancellor's Office for Special Events SSCIL Gies Groundbreaking Ceremony, Certified March 2023

    -Chancellor's Office for Special Events Chancellor's Staff Excellence Awards, Certified March 2023

    Keep up the great work!


  2. 3-20-23 Internal Meeting

    On March 20, UIUC sustainability representatives met and discussed the following:

    Attendance: Julie Wurth, Pete Varney, Marty Kaufmann, Shawn Patterson, Thurman Etchison, Bryan Johnson, Travis Tate, Daphne Hulse


    1. March 2: Final Report (see attached document).
    2. Upcoming iCAP Zero Waste Team Recommendations
      1. ZW010: Tailgate Recycling
        1. Blue bag distribution to cars and RVs upon the start of tailgating.
        2. Volunteers walking throughout the tailgating lots to assist as needed.
        3. Two central collection stations to start (where filled blue bags will be collected, potentially iSEE tents).
        4. Grange Grove Field cleanup after tailgating.
        5. Volunteers going through the stands after football games for recyclable collection.
        6. DIA to assist with communication about the initiative (communication to tailgaters, ticket holders); surveying fans afterward to solicit for feedback to assist with program improvement.
      2. ZW011: State Farm Center Recycling
        1. Implementing recycling bins on the upper concourse.
        2. Integrating new staff training into the process to ensure that blue recycling bags are separated from the landfill bags (not placed in the compactor below the facility).
    Attached Files: 
  3. suggestions for Clean Energy Planning

    Associated Project(s): 

        --Your Information--

          Name: Damon McFall, PE, MBA

          Affiliation: Mechanical Science & Engineering Department



        --Suggestion Details--

          Subject / Project Name: Creating a Tasked Approach to 2050 Carbon

          Neutrality Objective

          Type: New Project


          Project: Act 2050.


          As 2022 concludes, I sense the need to draft up my end of the

          year thoughts on iCAP and our approach. We cannot afford to think

          only of 2050 as our ultimate goal of net-zero carbon achievement.

          We must consider incremental plans, i.e. 2030 and 2040 with our

          stretch goal attaining victory by 2050. Please find my thoughts

          on addressing climate change at the University of Illinois and

          proposal for a new project that will involve a massive effort of

          bringing together respective parties in developing a

          comprehensive Act 2050 schedule to complement and build upon the

          Clean Energy Plan. The tasks below are to stimulate thought.

          However, they lack supporting detail and perhaps other factors

          not yet considered by the author. Such are welcomed to develop a

          framework of measurable action and allow for prudent planning of

          constrained resources. The seven broad concepts currently are: 1)

          source sustainably, 2) build smartly and well, 3) renovate

          strategically, 4) measure the relevant, 5) educate widely, 6)

          monitor and act astutely, and 7) world events. This could be a

          supplement provided to a hired holistically thinking firm that

          can organize the broad and diverse community to plan the entirety

          of a GHG emission zero campus and community.


          1.     Source Sustainably.

          a.     Stay abreast of source utility providers and on-campus

          generation. How will these interplay and complement each other in

          joint master planning efforts?

          b.     Develop relationships with source utility providers and

          maintain awareness and encourage phased master planning documents

          (i.e. 2030, 2040, 2050) to be jointly developed and shared by

          campus and utility providers.


          2.     Build Smartly and WELL.

          a.     By 2023, abandon the net-zero growth policy while requiring

          all new projects and current projects to build/renovate to

          “net-zero ready”, or LEED Platinum (latest version).

          b.     By 2023, attend professional organizational meetings to

          encourage local professionals to educate themselves on "net-zero

          ready" building paradigm.

          c.     By 2023, chart and understand time related metrics (and cost)

          to deliver a capital project, especially with CDB participation

          as is anticipated unless P3 approach receives BOT approval.

          i.      This analysis should include the availability of labor at max

          capacity of union tradespersons to perform installations.

          Recently, at six large campus projects, the labor halls were

          empty. What does the educational and labor pipeline and trends

          forecast for tradespersons over next 30 years?

          ii.     Illinois State and University of Illinois Springfield

          construction projects will also be increasing as time approaches,

          thus perhaps drawing on regional labor pool.

          iii.    If we must address 100 buildings collectively, plus many in

          the surrounding community, we may be looking at 15-20 years of

          continuous construction at 100% labor availability (having all

          labor re-tooled to know latest tech and science of advancing


          d.     Campus level technologies deployable now (2023) are to be

          considered in the proposed Clean Energy Plan and may include:

          steam, chilled water, solar, wind, geothermal, nuclear, methane,

          renewable natural gas, hydrogen, and low temperature hot water,

          and other delivery systems. Appears the solution lies in

          optimizing the various potentials, various use types, and

          external utility provider sources of available technologies for

          the optimal benefit per investment.

          e.     Building level technologies deployable now (2023) are to be

          considered in the proposed Clean Energy Plan and may include:

          energy recovery wheels, heat pump, advanced sequences of

          operation, auto-fault detection and diagnostics, variable speed

          drives, digital controls, occupancy/vacancy sensors, LED

          lighting, heat recovery chillers, high efficiency boilers, low

          temp heating water systems, variable refrigerant technologies,

          and building envelope and comfort system continuous and


          f.      Build so as to be maintainable afterwards with least effort

          and educated resources.

          g.     By 2025, make it mandatory to design to optimally reduce scope

          1 and 2 GHG emissions.

          h.     By 2025 and ongoing, reflect on and enable efficiencies in the

          capital project delivery process to reduce time in each action.

          i.      By 2026, hire only A/E’s and Construction Managers with

          experience in providing “net zero ready” and WELL buildings;

          must demonstrate continuous advancement in net-zero knowledge and


          j.      By 2027, decide what campus utility systems will be used to

          meet 2050 objective.

          k.     By 2027, create “Program Statement” language that includes

          provisions for mandatory meeting “net zero ready”, WELL

          Buildings, LEED Platinum buildings, and neutral GHG emission

          objectives and include as possible International Living Institute

          and Regeneration Design concepts to stretch towards


          l.      By 2027, enable state and local government to require more

          stringent energy and greenhouse gas emissions policies for state

          and non-state funded capital projects.

          m.     By 2030, build to net-zero GHG emission levels while

          optimizing source production, energy use index, and human

          wellness per building use type.


          3.     Renovate Strategically.

          a.     By 2023, demolish as necessary during renovation to reduce

          release of embodied carbon.

          b.     By 2023, recycle as much as possible when demolishing.

          c.     By 2026 to 2041, design all systems of facilities to "GHG

          neutral or net-zero ready" for buildings campus determines to

          keep for next 30 years (campus needs to create a long-term vision

          and planning document to 2050 that address carbon neutrality).

          d.     By 2029 to 2049, execute phased construction of

          projects/utilities to achieve net-zero carbon metric, using 100%

          of available labor pool and plan on 20 years of continuous

          construction activity.


          4.     Measure the Relevant.

          a.     By 2023, maintain accurate, trended, and normalized energy

          consumption data on all facilities.

          b.     By 2025, create and perform a 5-year rotating plan to perform

          Level 2 Energy Audits on top 100 GHG emitting facilities by


          c.     By 2025, know and track annually Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3

          emissions as developed by the EPA for each facility on campus.


          5.     Educate Widely.

          a.     By 2024, if research is underway that may impact carbon

          neutrality objectives, inform campus with expected year of

          commercially available and UL listed products.

          b.     By 2024, communicate widely the project concept to occupation

          length of time, availability of labor resources, availability of

          vendor resources, etc.

          i.      As an example, the LUMEB facility took 8 years from concept to

          occupancy. This transpired over COVID-19, but before supply chain


          ii.     One can expect supply chain shortages for relevant technology

          and design/installation expertise to increase as we approach 2050

          on a global scale.

          c.     By 2025 to 2040, incentivize education of entire building

          industry on net-zero approaches.

          d.     By 2026 (upon receipt of master plan), share plan with and

          have mandatory workshops for any parties who participate in the

          design, construction, and maintenance of a new facility on

          campus, including many representatives and authorities at campus

          facilities and services. They provide utility provisions, energy

          certifications, and sustainable measures as approved by State of

          Illinois and in harmony with their independently crafted building

          standards, existing infrastructure, and internal master planning


          e.     By 2026, report to campus and others the annual scope

          emissions mentioned above for each facility.

          f.      By 2026, enable all chairs, heads, and business associates to

          understand the fiscal impact expected and provide time to

          allocate/determine funding resources.

          g.     By 2026, enable education of latest technology and

          improvements in a continuous fashion year after year to labor

          pool (update materials minimally once per year), i.e. A2L low

          flammability refrigerant.


          6.     Monitor and Act Astutely.

          a.     Now… be aware of governmental, political and scientific

          organizations programs and effects, educate widely!

          i.      Now... COP, Paris Agreement, etc.

          b.     Now… be aware of global companies and efforts or lack

          thereof to achieve net-zero carbon emissions.

          c.     Now… know dynamic vendor supply chain constraints,

          understand “early bird gets the worm” strategy, and update

          general project timelines.

          d.     Now…plan to abandon steam generation at campus level and

          move to building level as required as efficiently as possible,

          begin migration.

          e.     Now… assess and track dynamic public opinion as we approach

          2030 and each following year successfully, reviewing as to

          impact; calculate loss or gain of tuition and research revenue

          based on progress to net-zero carbon.

          f.      By 2026, be aware of campus scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions

          per EPA on annual basis and act to maintain momentum as



          7.     World Events.

          a.     Plan for and consider probability of effect on timescale

          and perhaps necessity to exert more effort due to war, civil

          unrest, pandemic, or like events.


          Pros / Cons:

          Pros - provides a proposal of actual tasks required to achieve

          carbon neutrality by 2050 by our campus and surrounding

          community, seeking to provide a platform for discussion of a

          comprehensive and holistic view of the complex and dynamic forces

          that will minimally affect the end objective.

          Cons - This suggestion is of one mind. The suggestions above may

          already be in motion, but not broadly communicated in a unified

          fashion. Broader and inclusive discussion with respective parties

          to be affected by this cultural evolution (everyone) need to be

          involved in the discussion and provide their independent thoughts

          towards enabling the community at large and state to achieve the

          2050 objective.





    The results of this submission may be viewed at:



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  4. archived info: previous project description

    Associated Project(s): 

    Facilities and Services has started an initiative that helps increase awareness of the program ECIP and the iCAP commitment to reduce energy consumption of buildings and create a more sustainable campus. Through the new ECIP Championship Challenge leaders in buildings can:

    •  Sign up to be a part of the ECIP Championship Challenge and get guidance and encouragement from campus sustainability leaders to reduce consumption
    •  Get connected with a student sustainability representative in the building to engage the student body
      • In Lincoln Hall, because students/faculty left the windows open when they left the classrooms, the inefficient heating system had to be constantly on, which resulted in a high usage of thermal units and utility cost. Leaders of the building launched an initiative to inform residents on the consequences of leaving the windows open.
      • create building’s *energy report-card for each semester to show how effective/ineffective their measures have been and where to allocate funds to reduce cost and consumption
      • publicize positive achievements to the student group and to the rest of the building to encourage active participation to achieve iCAP goals.
    •  Get access to the online ECIP pledge system, where students, faculty, and staff can pledge to be an active sustainability advocate on behalf of your building
    • Receive recognition for their representatives’ efforts at the Campus Sustainability Celebration each October
      • hand out plaques to the college with the most ECIP signees, building with the most reduction in energy/water, most participation, etc. as well as certifications for the student sustainability representatives. 
    • Earn the ECIP Championship award and become part of the growing number of ECIP award winning buildings who have already made a substantial impact on energy and water consumption.
  5. Considerations for clean thermal energy

    There are a few examples of clean thermal energy in use on campus at this time. These include:

    • the solar thermal panels on the Activities Rec Center, heating the three swimming pools
    • the biomass boiler at the Energy Farm, heating the two story greenhouse on south Race Street
    • geothermal installations providing heating and cooling at the Fruit Farm Admin Building, the RIPE greenhouse, the Campus Instructional Facility, a few buildings at Allerton Park, the solar decathlon Gable Home at the Energy Farm, and a few rooms in the Hydrosystems Building
    • a wood-fired stove heating some maintenance buildings at Allerton Park

    We could expand these types of energy systems...

    • Additional geothermal installations are being planned for various places around campus, including a geothermal battery system at the Energy Farm.  The other geothermal locations in planning discussions now include the South Campus Center for Interdisciplinary Learning, a future greenhouse for CABBI, and the Doris Christopher Kelley Illinois Extension Building in the Arboretum.
    • The biomass boiler at the Energy Farm was designed with the anticipation of future expansion.
    • Solar thermal is a great option for our area of the planet, but it is not easy to integrate it in our existing energy enterprise.

    Another option for clean thermal energy is biogas, which UIUC contributes to locally through the Grind2Energy system, which takes food waste from the dining halls to the Urbana-Champaign Sanitary District (UCSD).  UCSD puts it through their anaerobic digester which captures the methane (a very strong greenhouse gas).  Currently, that captured methane is used to run an electrical generator, which provides power to the UCSD facility.  An alternative would be to upgrade the methane to pipeline quality and use the biogas a Abbott Power Plant on campus.  This is an expensive option that would require a lot of coordination and funding.

    Another strong option is a micronuclear reactor, which is being studies by the Grainger College of Engineering faculty and researchers.  This system could be integrated with the existing steam distribution system and provide ghg-free energy to campus.


  6. 3-1-23 3 solar charging tables installed at University of Illinois!

    Associated Project(s): 

    On March 1, the University of Illinois welcomed 3 new solar charging table stations, thanks to collaboration with Coca-Cola and the You Are Here Agency. One solar table was installed at the north end of Physical Plant Services Building, another at the south end of Abbott Power Plant, and a third at Allerton Park.

  7. 3-2-23 Fighting Illini, Fighting Waste Diversion Breakdown

    A breakdown of the materials collected on 3/2:

    • Arena:
      • 220 lbs aluminum
      • 300 lbs plastic
      • TOTAL: 520 lbs from the arena
    • Recycling bins around the concourse:
      • 120 lbs aluminum
      • 200 lbs plastic
      • TOTAL: 320 lbs from the recycling bins
    • Pulled from the waste stream (came from the compactor below the facility):
      • 440 lbs of mixed materials (paper, cardboard, aluminum, plastic) that the sort workers pulled at the Waste Transfer Station


    TOTAL: 1,280 pounds of recyclables

    340 pounds of aluminum

    500 pounds of plastic

    440 pounds of mixed material (paper, cardboard, aluminum, plastic)


    • Diversion rate
      • 4,540 total waste collected that night (trash + recycling)
      • 1,280 of this total waste was recycled that night
      • 1280/4540 = 28% diverted
  8. 3-2-23 Fighting Illini, Fighting Waste Results

    Good afternoon,


    Thank you for volunteering at the Fighting Illini, Fighting Waste event last Thursday! You were among ~100 other student volunteers who signed up and helped initiate recycling within State Farm Center. The community-level work you have done to raise awareness for sustainability is invaluable.


    During this event, you helped divert 1,280 pounds of recyclable material away from the landfill! In total, 28% of the materials consumed at this event were diverted away from the landfill. We are incredibly impressed with this number. What a feat!


    As a part of our improvement process for future events, we invite you to complete this anonymous Google Form survey.


    Are you interested in joining other sustainability initiatives on campus?

    • Browse through the Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) Teams, and reach out to those you are interested in attending.
    • Sign up for a tour of the university’s Waste Transfer Station and learn about what happens after trash and recycling are thrown in the bin.
    • Sign the Use the Bin pledge and commit to always using the recycling bin. We’re working towards our 10,000-signature goal!
    • Sign up for the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment’s (iSEE) Illini Lights Out event coming up on Friday, March 24 from 5:30-7:00pm.
    • Attend the 2023 iSEE Congress: Addressing Crises of Planetary Scale
    • Join iSEE, Volunteer Illini Projects (VIP), Students for Environmental Concerns (SECS), and Facilities & Services on Thursday, April 18 for Earth Month Trash Pickup!


    Thank you,


    Daphne Hulse (she/her)
    Zero Waste Coordinator
    Facilities & Services | University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
    +1 (217) 333-7550 |

  9. Weekly Update: Closed for Spring Break

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Bike Center is closed this week for Spring Break and I’ll be working an abbreviated week myself. We’ve got a dozen plus bikes for sale and I’ll safety check a few more before I bow out for the week.

    On Friday, we got maybe the oddest donation yet: an iPod mini, complete with charging cord…

    We reorganized and moved one of our storage racks from the backside of the space up front to the lobby so we can hold more bikes for sale up there. In the storage area, we’re pulling pedals/turning handlebars and so can fit more bikes without the rack.

    In more sobering news, a patron who’d finished a Build-a-Bike a couple weeks ago was hit while riding the bike he’d fixed here and ended up in the ER needing stitches. He is fine, otherwise, and told me the news in person, so he is ok. The number of people I know who’ve been hit by a car is quickly approaching double digits.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 37

    Sales: $1,234.50

    Bikes (refurb): 3 for $825
    Membership: 2 for $60
    Tires/tubes: 7 for $115

    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  10. iCAP Portal Admin Meeting - March 10, 2023

    Associated Project(s): 


    • Removed RSS Feeds from listings (e.g. Project Updates for collection: Geothermal Projects)
    • Q: Can we limit access to menu selection for Projects to only certain users - e.g. iCAP Admins?
      • A: Yes! it turns out we'd already done that :-) iCAP Admins and iCAP Moderators can update the menu system, but iCAP Advocates cannot.
    • Implemented new search indexing algorithm to make search less rigid:
      • Will now find different versions of equivalent words (e.g. plurals and singular treated as the same word)
      • Omitting an apostrophe when searching will find versions of that word which include an apostrophe
      • Note: doesn't seem to understand that "bikes" and "bicycles" are equivalent, though - I can look into whether I can add in certain equivalent words. Are there others we'd like to see?


    • Discussion item from Stacy:
      • I would like to add to the agenda a brainstorm for ways we might be able to make a Project Page for Sustainability Experiential Learning projects.


        This idea is the basis of the Resilience Team economic analysis recommendation that  iWG passed. Members of the iCAP Education team are working with me.


        The project is basically like this:


        1. A needed project is identified by a community organization (e.g. life cycle analysis of a green technology for a new building),
        2. A Capstone class is identified (Eric Green’s Captstone) interested in experiential learning projects.
        3. A faculty mentor is named (Eric Green or other expert)
        4. Student teams form to work on the experiential learning project during their capstone class.
        5. Students work on the project, learn from it, deliver value to the “community client”
      • Anna Mehl from the Education iCAP Team and I are currently information gathering and brainstorming ways to create a page where we can provide information about future sustainability experiential learning projects.


        Some programs that are similar include:


      • Those websites are not set up the same way as the iCAP portal. What can we do? What can’t we do? Is the iCAP portal appropriate for this project – should we look for a different home?

      • Outcomes/Decisions:
        1. Has been discussed before, there are challenges to implementing it
        2. Not proceeding with this on iCAP Portal at this time, maybe later?
        3. See Independent Student Projects for an example of a similar attempt on iCAP Portal - see Project Background and associated Project Updates
    • Should we show a "last updated" date on the projects?
      • Automatically show last time Project was updated?
      • Add field that is updated intentionally when a project's information has been reviewed & by whom?
      • Add a disclaimer about information being correct at the time it was entered?
    • Question about a TODO: "Collections page: Add image upload option". At a previous meeting we had this TODO, but what was the context? Was it to have a thumbnail for each Collection? Or a banner image?
    • Should we link to "Take Action" project from homepage?
    • Archiving projects
      • Add "Archived" checkbox?
      • Add "Archived" to Visibility options?
      • Add "Archived" to Project Status options? (probably not - this mixes the status of the project itself with whether we still want it to show up on the site)
      • Remove from nested listings, still publicly available?


    • Projects pages metrics 2-∞ have no labels on Y-axis (e.g. Pedestrian and Bicycle Counts)
    • Permissions:
      • Metric Tracking:
        • Add/update: iCAP Admins, iCAP Moderators, iCAP Advocates
        • Delete: iCAP Admins, iCAP Moderators, NOT iCAP Advocates
      • Metric Targets:
        • Add/update: iCAP Admins, iCAP Moderators, NOT iCAP Advocates
        • Delete: iCAP Admins, iCAP Moderators, NOT iCAP Advocates
    • Change iCAP Advocates to iCAP Clerks
    • Fancy project layout mockups - keep tweaking #3 to improve contrast
    • Discuss metrics
      • Metrics with lots of data
      • Consider how to handle old metrics that no longer track new data. Archive somehow?
      • Fun with math (e.g. combining multiple metrics)
      • Calculated Metrics on Dev site
  11. iSEE New Green Event Certifications

    Congratulations to the newest recipients of our Green Event Certification Program!


    -Recreation, Sport, and Tourism/Champaign Park District Bunny Open House, Certified March 2023

    -Chancellor's Office for Special Events University of Pretoria Delegation Lunch, Certified March 2023


    Keep an eye on the iSEE calendar for all of the Earth Month activities coming up in April!

  12. Weekly Update: Open M-F, Closed for Spring Break

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, Notable item of the week was running out entirely of used 700c tires—popular size, I guess! I was able to run over to the warehouse and grab enough wheels off junk bikes that we’re able to live another week. I used the long bike trailer on Wednesday morning and yet another person called out “nice bike!” as I pedaled by. I always get looks or comments when piloting that thing around.

    This week we’ll be opening back up to 5 days a week, M – F 2 to 6p. We’ll see how our Tues/Thurs numbers look but I doubt we’ll be swamped yet as folks adjust to our new hours.

    We’ll be closed next week for Spring Break and reopen Monday, March 20th.

    The numbers:

    Visitors: 18

    Sales: $174.50
    Memberships: 1 for $30
    Tires/tubes: 6 for $43


    Jacob Benjamin
    Campus Bike Center Coordinator

  13. 3-6-23 Internal Meeting

    On March 6, UIUC sustainability representatives met and discussed the following:

    Attendance: Tony Mancuso, Julie Wurth, Marty Kaufmann, Jen Fraterrigo, Steve Breitwieser, Shawn Patterson, Travis Tate, Daphne Hulse


    1. Discussed the results from the 3-2-23 game.
      1. F&S will post for Don't Waste Wednesdays.
      2. iSEE will post on their newsletter in a couple weeks.
    2. Jen to assist with calculating the recapture rate -- Daphne to provide the bottles and cans to weigh.
    3. Email Travis and Steve the document shown (Shawn's calculation notes).
    4. Todd Wilson -- U of I homepage: send the March 2 results.
    5. How do we stand across the Big Ten schools for recycling at athletic events? Investigate