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Projects Updates for key objective: 2.1 Net-Zero Space

  1. Energy iCAP Meeting 1/30/2023

    The Energy iCAP Team met on January 30th, 2023 to discuss recommendations on building energy efficiency and revitalizing the energy scholars council at UIUC.

    Link to meeting recording

  2. Summary: F&S Asset Management Plan 2021-2025

    Associated Project(s): 

    Did you know Illinois has the highest percentage of Pre-World War II academic facilities in the Big Ten? This, of course, provides students, faculty, and staff with a sense of history, place, and uncommon beauty while considering the campus.

    On the other hand, older buildings require more and detailed maintenance in order to satisfy up-to-date code compliance and hit notable programmatic needs for students, faculty, and staff.

    Additionally, design that fits with the pre-war era of the building’s birth is important to maintain a cohesive architectural look for the campus. Assets are managed through different funding sources, including the Academic Facilities Maintenance Fund Assessment (AFMFA), an ongoing fee assessed each semester to students, and the Deferred Maintenance Program. The F&S Asset Management Plan 2021-2025 “illustrate[s] the number of aging facilities… provide[s] definition of the Facility Condition Index, review[s] how deferred maintenance has been tracked historically, and illustrate[s] current funding strategies for addressing asset management at Illinois for the next 5 years,” it reads.

    The university plans to renew aging infrastructure through programs like the Academic Facilities Maintenance Fund Assessment, means to ensure building renovations are done to deferred maintenance projects.

  3. Energy iCAP Team Meeting from 04-14-21

    The Energy iCAP Team met on April 14th, 2021 with Brian Bundren, a member of the Illinois Space Advisory Committee, about to learn more about how campus space can be managed more efficiently as a way to reduce energy consumption. The University moving from hybrid learning to more in-person instruction and the new IVCB budget model that assigns bills individual colleges for their energy use will have significant impacts on space usage. The team also discussed our recommendation for Green Labs, or ways to integrate sustainability in research labs and reduce their energy consumption. We will also be moving forward with recommending an Energy Planning document to outline steps towards carbon neutrality by 2050. 

    Meeting minutes and agenda are attached!

  4. Energy iCAP Team Meeting Minutes from 3-10-21

    The Energy iCAP Team met on March 10th, 2021 to discuss next steps on a recommendation for a Comprehensive Energy Master Plan after F&S has published their Energy Management Plan that aims for a 50% reduction in energy utilization by 2026. The team also discussed recommendations for a Green Labs Program and ways to manage space usage on campus. Given how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed in-person activites and created a hybrid workforce, the team believes it will be important to study underused spaces on campus to reduce building-level energy use. 

    Meeting minutes, agenda, and chat log are attached!

  5. Energy iCAP Team Meeting Minutes from 2-10-21

    The Energy iCAP Team had a meeting on Feb. 10th where student member, Brinn McDowell, shared a presentation on calculated energy savings from green lab protocols that could greatly contribute towards energy conservation efforts. Updates were give on the Building Envelope Pilot Project, which is anticipated to start in March with several Energy iCAP Team students participating. Among other topics of discussion were ways to enforce compliance with state energy standards, to cooperate with student leaders across the Engineering, Architecture, and Design disciplines, and to condition vacated spaces in a time of distance-learning and -working. The agenda, meeting minutes, and chat log are attached below!

  6. Daily Illini article about impacts of covid-19 on iCAP

    The Daily Illini published an article about the impacts of covid-19 on the campus sustainability efforts. One key message is that, even with some delays associated with the pandemic, we are still determined to move forward.  The conclusion of the article says: 

    Mohamed Attalla, executive director of Facilities and Services, said there are lots of initiatives to reach carbon neutrality in terms of energy and hopes to reach 400,000 metric tons of CO2 this year.

    Attalla said the addition of a third solar farm, advances in geothermal energy and research in carbon capture contribute to achieving carbon neutrality and that long-term, COVID-19 should not be a problem.

    “Maybe we’re behind a little in implementing some projects, but we’ll be able to catch up,” he said. “I don’t think there will be a long-term impact on the iCAP implementation.”

    White also said she doesn’t anticipate any long-term problems with achieving the iCAP goals and believes it’s important for the University to lead by example when it comes to sustainability.

    “I really believe that accomplishing the iCAP goals is something we can do, we need to do and we will do,” she said. 

    “Climate change isn’t waiting for us,” Edwards said. “(The University is) the laboratory for science, for humanities, for arts …  all those kinds of things show what is possible of humanity.”

    “If we’re going to call ourselves leaders, then we need to lead,” he said.


  7. Provost describes iCAP in space inventory letter

    Provost Andreas Cangellaris included this statement about the iCAP in the April 2019 letter (attached) to colleges and instructional units about the Space Inventory:

    "I also want to take this opportunity to recap several campus initiatives regarding space stewardship. As you may be aware, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign established the Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) in May 2010 and updated the document in 2015. The document outlines strategies, initiatives, and targets toward meeting the stated goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. The targets and strategies detailed in the plan represent a series of commitments the University is making in order to achieve its sustainability goals, including the Net Zero Space Growth Policy as found in the CAM. I encourage you to review our commitments as outlined in the climate action plan and the Net Zero Space Growth Policy"

  8. Archive: previous project name and description

    Associated Project(s): 

    "No Net Increase in Space" Policy

    According to plans set forth by the 2010 Illinois Climate Action Plan, the University will enact a “no net increase in space” policy for the entire campus by 2012, applicable to all space controlled by campus including auxiliary units and rental space. Continued growth of the campus has led to an increase in the University’s use of non-renewable energy sources. In order to decrease the projected increase in carbon emissions, steps must be taken to ensure that square footage is only added on necessary occasions.

    As part of the “no net increase in space” policy, the Non-Instructional and Instruction Space Taskforces were created. These taskforce provided advice on non-instructional and instructional space utilization on the Urbana campus.

    The goals of the Non-Instructional Space Taskforce are to develop and review policies governing the assignment of space to promote the most efficient use; prepare recommendations for policies to govern how space is assigned and used; propose an approval process for requesting new and additional space that considers the iCAP commitment; determine policies for space being used for storage of excess equipment, furniture and physical records; and review the policies of other institutions to identify practices that should be incorporated into the policy recommendations above. The committee is also looking into space management tools to allow for better transparency of space allocated to units.

    The goals of the Instructional Space Taskforce are to adopt guiding principles for use of instructional space and determine standards for equipment within the instructional spaces; determine the appropriate inventory mix of instructional space and what qualifies as "instructional space; create or update an inventory and assess the use and condition of all instructional space; and create and track space utilization metrics on an annual basis.

  9. 2015 iCAP potential strategies

    Associated Project(s): 

    Maintain or reduce the campus gross square footage relative to the FY10 baseline.

    The 2010 iCAP committed the campus to enacting a 'no net increase in space' policy applicable to all space controlled by campus. Such a policy enables greenhouse gas emission reductions through restricting additional gross square feet of campus buildings, which is directly related to the peak energy demand for campus utilities. In addition to limiting future energy expenditures, there will also be a reduction in the use of resources for construction materials and processes, and a reduction of transportation emissions associated with urban sprawl.

    A net zero growth space policy has been approved by the Provost’s Non-Instructional Space Task Force.  The campus should target formal adoption of this policy and incorporation into the Campus Administrative Manual before the end of FY15. According to this policy, when buildings are demolished or leases are vacated (post-2010), their gross square footage would be added to a “square footage bank” held by the Provost’s office. The Provost may “retire” this square footage in order to effect a gradual reduction in campus gross square footage, or may make allocations of this square footage to offset individual projects that would otherwise increase gross square footage. Such an allocation from the bank would represent a negative square footage contribution to the project to enable it to result in no increase in gross square footage.

    Modern building standards typically require more square footage for accessibility and mechanical needs. Nevertheless, campus could prevent the need for increases in square footage by judiciously examining existing and new space requirements at a departmental level. Campus could also consider best practices from other campuses, such as a space marketplace that provides rewards for space reduction and enables efficient space swaps. The campus could develop a standardized reporting system that measures utilization of classrooms, classroom laboratories, conference rooms, and meeting rooms based on variables such as time and day of the week, average percent fill, facilities demand, etc. Campus administrators could then identify underutilized spaces and reassign them for other purposes. A comprehensive space audit of the campus could also be considered.