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Project Updates for collection: Renewable Energy Projects


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  1. 05/03/24 Update

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hi Daphne,


    Have you had any discussion with Housing dining about piloting composting in their catering operations?


    I believe we could encourage them to lead a pilot for that.







    Hi Morgan,


    I just spoke with Thurman today during our final iCAP ZW team meeting, and he has informed me that Dining will be moving their catering operations from Housing Food Stores to Florida Avenue Residence Hall while HFS undergoes construction. For that year, they will use FAR’s existing Grind2Energy. When they move Catering back to HFS, they intend to have a sixth Grind2Energy installed there and ready to use.


    Thank you,


  2. ECE Net Zero Celebration 

    The Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Building at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign was certified as the university’s first zero-energy facility in January 2023. Join the ECE Department and The Grainger College of Engineering to celebrate this milestone on the path to building a more sustainable future. 

    When: Wednesday January 24, 2024 from 4 p.m.
    Where: Electrical & Computer Engineering Building Atrium, 306 N. Wright St, Urbana, IL 61801


  3. Green Power Partnership’s 2022 Year in Review

    Associated Project(s): 


    The EPA GPP has realeased a 2022 year in review graphic and data. Please see the attached graphic.

    • EPA Partners reported more than 3,000 green power purchases and projects, up 13 percent over the previous year.
    • EPA Partners increasingly engaged directly with new projects through project-specific supply options like PPAs, surpassing retail supply options for the first time in program history.
    • Nearly half of all 687 EPA Partners procured enough green power to meet 100 percent of their total annual domestic electricity demand.
  4. IACT - Energy for Service and Source Well Procurement

    Good morning, Mike!


    Great to hear from you.  Absolutely can provide you with some additional information on both of those procurement pathways:


    1. Sourcewell:



    The University is a member of a purchasing co-op which provides pre-negotiated pricing for a variety of solutions – including microgrids – which enables them to purchase directly through Sourcewell without needing to go out to bid.  Please see attached for an example of the Siemens Sourcewell contract offerings and below for the University’s member information:


    1. Energy as a Service:


    Siemens could design, develop, own, implement and maintain a turn key energy system allowing the University to avoid capital investment and simply pay a “subscription cost” if you will for all their energy needs for I-ACT.  This would also enable them to stay up to date on new technologies as they come on line.  Please see attached “4-Steps for Integrating EaaS” for additional information.


    Again, we would be very happy to get on a call to walk through how to customize either of these offerings to meet their needs in cooperation with the work they are doing with AECOM.


    Could be a really exciting collaboration!


    I warmly welcome your thoughts.


    Thank you and


    All the best!




    Here is the info I received from Siemend for your review.








    Regarding the ongoing discussion of the electrical microgrid design (including PV panels on site) for U20029:IACT the PSC has wondered if UIUC has ever participated in either of this type of programs for procuring such systems by what appears a more design/build method?





    Good Afternoon Aaron and Graham,


    Can you advise if the attached Sourcewell Contract is one that we can utilize, if not, is there an IPHEC contract that would provide this type service? I tried to research the existing IPHEC vendors.


    Thank You






    Hi, Maria


    The awarded contracts on the flyer all appear to be expired per the Sourcewell website.


    #031517-SIE for building technologies

    #051017-SIE for EV supplies and equipment

    #030817-SIE includes HVAC systems and mechanical


    Which contract were you interested in using? We may have something already.


    Also, IPHEC must adopt a consortia award first before a member can leverage it.


    Thank you




    I am not really sure. Morgan or Kevin can you advise on Graham’s question?


    Thank You


    Hello Graham,


    I’m the F&S-CP Project Manager for the U20029: IACT track and fleet building project.  This is an automated and connected track for testing autonomous vehicles and anticipates having renewable energy production from wind turbines and PV panels on the large track site.


    The question which launched this email chain was received from the track designers who became aware of the existence to programs such as Sourcewell when discussing the PV design with potential sub designers for that portion of the track design.  I’m afraid I am not familiar enough with the three projects to know for sure but from the thumbnail descriptions perhaps the first one might be most similar to what is involved here, although this project would involve a large system covering both site elements producing renewable energy and only one building.  Their questions were really if the UIUC had interacted with Sourcewell in the past, and if Sourcewell might be an avenue to explore further as part of their design work.


    Would it be acceptable to share your contact information with the designers so that they could determine if your program could help provide some of the elements required for the IACT track and fleet building?


    Thank you,



  5. geothermal and UIC soil borings

    Hi Andy and Fernando,


    One of our key research partners for the Illinois Geothermal Coalition is Andy Stumpf (copied here).  He has asked if there are soil borings info for the Chicago campus.  Can you connect him with the right person?


    “Hi Morgan, Do you have a contact at UIC who would have access to their geotech and soil boring records.. person similar to Beth. I have been asked to help out with the Solar Decathlon project because they are interested in adding geothermal to the design. They plan to design an educational design and innovation center that is on the UIC campus and would occupy the two parking lots at 1198 W Vernon Park PI Parking, Chicago, IL 60607. Soil boring/geotech information for nearby buildings could help the design. I am also mapping Cook County, so this information would also be useful for that project. Would also be interested to know if there are any major water lines in along Harrison Street or I-290. Maybe an opportunity to include wastewater heat recovery.”





    Hi Morgan,


    Thanks for the introduction. Nice to meet you Fernando. I am going to find out from the students who they are working with at UIC.






    Thanks, it may be Fernando (He is out of the office).

    I can pull files related to the 2009 Geothermal wells, but it might help to have a specific question to circulate. IS this accurate: Does UIC have any records of Soil boring/geotech information from past geothermal well drilling?

    Regarding water lines – best to assume every where on campus has some utilities under it.  There is likely water on Harrison and Racine,


    Andy Mitchell 


    Hi Andy,


    Thanks for getting back to me. Actually, it would be possible to get access to or copies of the soil borings for all projects on UIC campus, not just the geothermal projects. The Illinois State Geological Survey maintains a database of geological, engineering geology, and geophysical information for the entire state. Here is snapshot for part of the UIC campus with engineering test hole delineated by the red dots and labeled by the total depth of the drilling. The data can be accessed through the ISGS’ ILWATER map service Currently, only the owner, location, and soil boring logs are available for most of the engineering borings, but we plan in the near future to provide access to the engineering geology data entered from the reports and if allowed by the owner/client a pdf of the scanned documents. The boring locations were digitized from the maps included in the reports or coordinates surveyed and provided with the logs. As Morgan knows, I am working with Facilities & Services here to digitize all the soil borings on our campus and provide them through the ILWATER map service. This effort is being funded as a student project that received a grant from the UIUC Student Sustainability Committee. If you are interested in having the UIC data served in a similar manner, let’s talk some more about how this is being done at UIUC. For much of the data the ISGS on the UIC campus came from research survey geologists or UIUC CEE faculty were involved with on the campus and from consultants involved in the project. Beyond the Illinois Solar Decathlon design project, this data is being compiled for the ISGS project to map the surface and subsurface geology of Cook and DuPage counties. This mapping is being done to update work that was done in the 1940s or early. The data is used to develop the maps and models of the geology which we make available to the public. Below is one of the cross sections we made this year for west to east cross section along Roosevelt Road. We plan by 2028 to have a 3D model of the geology available for Cook County. The mapping project is being funded by the U.S. Geological Survey.






    Andy – this is exciting stuff and I’m confident we can share the records, once we locate them.

    I’m out of the office most of next week, and Fernando is just back and will playing catch up.

    When do you need this info by?


    Andy Mitchell 


    Hi Andy and Fernando,


    Getting back to you about the geotech soil borings. I have shared with you the Box folder with the logs found so far. The logs in the files starting with “x” have been plotted and the information is available through the ISGS borings database The logs in the files starting with “g” have not been entered yet.






    Thanks for the nudge Andy.

    I’ll connect with our manager Dave Taeyaerts about the best way to go about getting this.

    When do you need the info by?


    Andy Mitchell 

  6. Small Solar at Energy Farm

    Associated Project(s): 




    Energy Tax Credit Form

    Webtools Form 447240223 submitted by:
    Tim Mies 
    College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (KL), Department of Crop Sciences (802), Staff
    11/09/2023 11:52 A.M.

    Thank you for submitting the Energy Tax Credit Form. The applicable University Liaison will contact you after it has been reviewed.

    1. Location:

    2. Applicant College/Department:
    Crop Sciences

    3. Project number and/or building (if applicable):
    near Energy Farm

    4. Anticipated beginning of construction date:

    5. Anticipated placed in service date:

    6. Total project budget (basis or cost):

    7. Estimated construction costs (only include total energy project cost, including contingency):

    8. Will the property be owned by the university as a depreciable asset?

    9. Will the property be financed with tax-exempt bonds?

    10. If yes, what percentage of the property is financed with tax-exempt bonds?

    11. Is the energy property funded by a restricted grant or restricted forgivable loan**?

    12. If yes, what amount is funded by a restricted grant or restricted forgivable loan?

    13. Provide a brief description of the project and the energy component that may qualify for the tax credit:
    Project will connect existing 15kw solar panels to campus electrical grid.

    14. Briefly describe the proposed intended use of the tax credit funds:
    Funds will be used to support campus ICAP efforts

    15. What tax credit is applicable for the project?
    Investment tax credit IRC Section 48: qualified energy property or technology (Appendix A)

    16. Is this energy property funded by a grant made under Section 1603 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment of 2009 (The 1603 Program: Payments for Specified Energy Property in lieu of Tax Credits)?

    17. Which of the following options describes the property?
    equipment which uses solar energy to generate electricity, to heat or cool (or provide hot water for use in) a structure, or to provide solar process heat, except property used to generate energy for the purposes of heating a swimming pool, or

    18. Is there qualified interconnection property associated with the project?

    19. If yes, what is the basis (cost) of any qualified interconnection property associated with the energy project?

    20. Is the property part of a clean hydrogen production facility?

    21. Does the project meet one (1) of the following requirements (five (5) times base credit amount for a total of 30%)?

    22. If yes, which requirement is met?
    Item #1

    23. Does the project meet the domestic content bonus credit**?

    24. Is the project located in an energy community**?

    25. Do you want to proceed?

    53. Submission and Liaisons
    Timothy Mies, Director Energy Farm Operations, 11/09/2023








    Hi Angie,


    I’ve reviewed this form (actually, Tim filled it out while I was with him), and I agree this small solar installation at UIUC should qualify for the IRA Tax Credit.  I understand that the next step is for you to review it, and then forward it to the Treasury Office for their review and processing.


    Please let me and Tim know if you have any questions.








    Is this project actually a solar installation or just the interconnection?


    From below:

    Project will connect existing 15kw solar panels to campus electrical grid.”


    If this is not the purchase/construction of solar panels for original use, it is not property as described under Section 48:

    equipment which uses solar energy to generate electricity, to heat or cool (or provide hot water for use in) a structure, or to provide solar process heat, except property used to generate energy for the purposes of heating a swimming pool,


    I’m happy to set up a time to discuss if that helps.


    Kimberly A. Maxwell, CPA


    Hi Tim and Rob,


    I’d like your perspective on this question about the small solar at the Energy Farm.  If you would like to discuss it, please let me know who to include in a call with the tax office.


    Thank you,



    Hi Morgan,


    Happy to discuss this further to determine if this project can meet the requirements for the credit.  Do we want to discuss internally first?



  7. Apprentice program for electrical work

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hi Josh,


    Do you know if we could request apprentices work on the 15kw solar install?  That could potentially bump us from a tax credit of ~$5500 to $33,000 if this goes through.





    How much of the labor has to be apprentice? 

    Joshua Robin


    15%  thanks!

    Morgan White


    Thanks Morgan!


    With a small crew, if they had one apprentice, that might catch what we need. 


    I overestimated below at 6x the base $5500, where apprentice would make it 5x, so only 27,500. 




    Thanks all. The contractor can put one apprentice on there.  Tech services and in house work would not have an apprentice most likely.  Is there a dollar value required for the apprentice labor or just 15 percent of total hours worked?  Are certified payrolls needed?


    Thank you



  8. Illinois Street Residence Hall Grind2Energy Tour

    Associated Project(s): 

    Members from the ISC, ZeroWaste Interns, as well as Daphne Hulse and Codie Sterner attended a tour of the Illinois Street Residence Halls and their Grind2Energy system today.