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Projects Updates for Topical iCAP Teams

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  1. iWG meeting agenda August 28, 2015

  2. iWG meeting minutes August 28, 2015

  3. update from Ben McCall

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members,

    Attached please find what we're calling version 2 of the 2015 iCAP. This is a mostly complete document that represents a synthesis of all of your teams' contributions into a consistent format, together with some additions from the iCAP Working Group and its subcommittee the iCAP Drafting Committee.

    We'd like to ask each of you to read through the entire document -- both so you have a good sense of the context your chapter is placed in, and also because you may well spot problems in other chapters. Please send any comments on other chapters to the relevant SWATeam (email addresses can be found in the headers of this message), or to me for chapters 1, 2, and 9.

    We ask that each of your SWATeams discuss your chapters amongst yourselves, with any other relevant stakeholders on campus (for example, units that would be impacted by the recommendations), and also with your consultation group members (or folks who volunteered to serve on your consultation group).  Please especially note the comments and questions from iWG members and others that are noted in the file.  You should feel free to correct any errors we have introduced, and re-insert any important points we might have inadvertently omitted.  Please also take this opportunity to improve the flow of the language where needed, as we have not attempted to polish the language.

    For consistency, please continue to use active verbs and "should"-type language for Objectives [which represent the items campus will hold itself accountable for], and use "could"-type language for Potential Strategies [which are to be considered as possible ways to meet the objectives, not as objectives themselves].

    Finally, and this is a big one, we'd like to ask you to provide within your chapter a cost estimate for each recommendation, along with the estimated payback (if any) in either financial or emissions terms. 

    These numbers, even if they are rough, will be incredibly useful to the Sustainability Council in evaluating the overall cost commitment of this plan, and also to iSEE and the administration as we prioritize campus efforts in response to the plan.  If there are certain things you need help in generating estimates for, please let me know and I'll try to get you in touch with folks who may be able to help.

    We realize we are asking for a lot, and the timeline is also fairly short.  We really need to receive your revised chapters by January 24, so that they can be reviewed by the iCAP Working Group in time to go out for public comment in February.  That, in turn, is necessary so that we can secure Sustainability Council approval in March, and have the iCAP signed by the Chancellor before Earth Day.

    We can discuss all of this in detail on Thursday morning, but I hope you'll have a chance to read through the document beforehand.

    Thanks so much for all you have already done, and all you are doing to shape the future of our campus!



    <<link to draft file>>

    P.S. Yesterday we had the first meeting of the Sustainability Council (with the Chancellor, Vice Chancellors, Deans, et al.) and we received very good feedback on the work that you've all been doing!


    Professor Benjamin J. McCall

    Associate Director for Campus Sustainability Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

  4. Update from Ben McCall

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members,

    First of all, thank you so much for the very thoughtful input for the revised Illinois Climate Action Plan!  The iCAP Working Group is currently in the process of folding everything together into a consistent format, and reviewing the recommendations.  Our hope is that by the 21st or shortly thereafter, we will have a fairly complete draft to circulate to you for your feedback.  We'll need to ask you for a quick review, as we will be presenting the next draft to the Sustainability Council on December 8th for their comments. [We will hold a public comment period in January, and then we are targeting Sustainability Council approval in March, and Chancellor approval in April.]

    Second, I wanted to encourage your teams (if you have not already done so) to begin whatever process you think makes sense for constituting your Consultation Groups.  I know that at least one team (Energy Generation) has begun this process, but I suspect others have not, since we've been receiving inquiries from interested participants wondering when they will be contacted.

    Third, I'd like to remind you that in some sense the work of the SWATeams is just beginning...we are counting on your teams to make specific recommendations for new policies or actions that campus units should be undertaking to meet our iCAP goals.  I attach the template that should be used for these recommendations; completed templates can be submitted to me via email at any time.  Please bear in mind that formal SWATeam recommendations are public documents that will be posted on the iSEE website.

    Thanks again for all of your help in making our campus more sustainable!



  5. note to SWATeams

    Dear SWATeams,

    The iCAP Drafting Committee is now in the process of synthesizing your chapters into a complete draft of the 2015 iCAP for review by the iCAP Working Group.  Once the iWG has reviewed it, we will share it with all of you to get your feedback as well.

    If you have any further edits to your draft chapters, please submit them by the end of the day on Thursday.  Of course we would welcome additional comments after that deadline if your teams garner new insights, but those should be submitted as separate lists of bulleted comments rather than incorporated into your chapter (where they might get lost in our editing process).

    Thanks for all of your hard work!



  6. October 30 meeting

    iCAP Working Group Thursday, October 30, 2014 358 NSRC, 1:30 - 3:00 pm

    1. Discussion with Kent Reifsteck, Director of Utilities & Energy Services Division, regarding campus energy and the Wind PPA
    2. Unmet targets from 2010 iCAP
    3. Overview of iCAP Forum and SWAT Team Recommendations
    4. Discussion of timeline for completing 2015 iCAP
    5. Other business


    Attached Files: 
  7. Thanks for a great iCAP Forum

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members,

    What a fantastic forum we had on Wednesday...great turnout and great discussion!  Thanks so much for all your hard work and for the nice presentations!

    As a reminder, the iCAP Working Group has asked that each SWATeam provide a draft chapter for the iCAP by the end of this month (which is coming up fast on Friday).

    The iWG is meeting this Thursday to begin discussing the drafts.  We will likely begin with Water and Purchasing, Waste, and Recycling, since we've already received those two.  [If other teams have sent me draft chapters, I must have misplaced them, so please remind me.]

    The iWG is under a tight timeline to synthesize all of these drafts into a complete document by year's end (and we are hoping to include some public comment opportunities during that period), so I hope you will all be able to meet the October 31 deadline.  [If you need a little extra time, please let me know as soon as possible.]

    Thanks again!



    Professor Benjamin J. McCall

    Associate Director for Campus Sustainability Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

  8. Update from Ben McCall

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members,

    First, I want to formally invite each of you to attend the iCAP Forum from 1-4 on October 22.  Below I append more details, along with an RSVP link.

    Second, I wanted to remind you that your team's recommendations for the 2015 iCAP should be presented by one (or more) of you during this Forum.  Please let me know who will be presenting for your team.

    Finally, please remember that the iCAP Working Group (iWG) requests your recommendations in written form by the end of October, using the format of the example chapter attached to this message.  The iWG will then synthesize the recommendations from all of the teams, along with the public input from the iCAP Forum, into a draft of the 2015 iCAP.  I expect we'll be sharing that draft with you all as soon as it's available to solicit your feedback.

    Thanks again for all of your help as we plan for a more sustainable campus!



    Attached Files: 
  9. Update from Ben McCall

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members,

    The iCAP Working Group (iWG) met today, and there are a few items I wanted to transmit to you.

    1) Attached is the approved template that your teams can use to submit formal recommendations for policies, initiatives, or studies, as described in the charge letter you received yesterday.  The iWG meetings this fall are 9/25, 10/30, 11/20, 12/4, and 12/18.  In order for a recommendation to be considered at a particular iWG meeting, it would be best if you could submit it roughly 2 weeks before that meeting.

    2) As a reminder, the charge letter asks that you update the spring reports on our campus progress towards existing iCAP goals to include Fiscal Year 2014 data.  While Evan's charge letter gave you a deadline of September 30, the iWG would be grateful if you might be able to submit these updated reports by September 22, so the iWG can review them at its September 25 meeting.

    3) Also attached is a first rough outline for the 2015 iCAP; please take a look through and consider what we are asking each SWATeam to provide. 

    At the end of the document are some thoughts about the key concepts of goals, objectives, and strategies that the iWG envisions as the core of the document.  Your suggested revisions to the iCAP are due by October 22, Campus Sustainability Day, on which representatives from each of your teams will lead a public discussion about the proposed goals, objectives, and strategies.

    This is going to be a really exciting semester, as we chart the future for campus sustainability!  If you have any questions or concerns about the process, please don't hesitate to ask.

    Thanks so much in advance for your efforts,


    P.S. For ease of use and to keep iSEE staff in the loop, I'd appreciate it if you could use the aliases in this email's header

    (swat-* when communicating with your team.

  10. Fall 2014 Charge Letter

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear Colleagues,

    Attached please find the formal charge letter for the SWATeams, along with the campus sustainability procedures approved by the Chancellor earlier this year.  I expect to be able to provide you with additional guidance about the format for the revised Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) following the next meeting of the iCAP Working Group this Thursday.

    We have very important work ahead of us this semester, and I look forward to working with you as we chart the future for campus sustainability at Illinois!




    Professor Benjamin J. McCall

    Associate Director for Campus Sustainability Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

  11. Overview of SWATeams SP14

    Associated Project(s): 

    In collaboration with Facilities & Services, iSEE is establishing six teams consisting of faculty, staff, and students to examine the six broad themes within the Illinois Climate Action Plan.  The teams are currently finalizing assessments of how the campus is doing in meeting its pre-2015 iCAP targets. 

    In the near future, the SWATeams will transition into recommending concrete steps the campus should take to meet its iCAP targets, as well as developing suggested revisions to the iCAP.  A procedure is currently being finalized within the campus administration to evaluate and endorse SWATeam recommendations; more details should be available soon.

    Each SWATeam, once fully populated, will have two faculty members (one serving as chair), two staff members, and two students.  Each team also has an iSEE intern serving as a "clerk" for the group.  In the near future, each SWATeam will also populate a "consultation group" of experts and stakeholders across campus to provide input and feedback to the SWATeam.

    The current membership of the SWATeams (clerks shown in square brackets) is:





    Energy Conservation and Building Standards
    [Claudia Szczepaniak]

    Brian Deal


    Josh Whitson

    Karl Helmink

    Claire McConnell

    Dhara Patel

    Energy Generation, Purchasing, and Distribution
    [Ben Reeber]

    Scott Willenbrock


    Mike Larson

    Tim Mies

    Drew O’Bryan

    Nathan Wells

    [Ben Cigelnik]

    Wojtek Chodzo-zajko


    Pete Varney

    Rick Langlois

    Bryce Davis

    Adam Dornford

    Agriculture, Land Use, Food, and Sequestration
    [David Gu]

    Bruce Branham

    Neal Merchen

    Dawn Aubrey

    Alexandra He

    Amanda Jacobs

    [Candice Stefani]


    Keith Erickson

    Kishore Rajagopalan

    Amy Liu
    Lance Langer

    Purchasing, Waste, and Recycling
    [Guy Urgo]

    Warren Lavey

    Dilip Chhajed

    Bart Bartels


    Matt Murphy

    Olivia Webb


  12. Earth Week note

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear SWATeam Members, A couple of important reminders and points:

    1. Next Monday, starting at 9am is the iCAP Forum, to be held in the Illini Union Rooms A & B. Please join us for whatever time you are available that morning, so you can interact with members of the campus community and get their insights/feedback.
    2. Each team will need to present a <5 minute presentation on their assessment. Hopefully each team has already decided who will be its representative? These presentations will begin around 9:30.
    3. There are a lot of exciting Earth Week events you may wish to attend -- see
    4. I would greatly appreciate it if you could send me at least a draft of your assessment by tomorrow, so that I can begin the process of putting together a poster for Monday afternoon's symposium.
    5. Campus is still finalizing a procedure to handle recommendations from the SWATeams, but we are converging on this.

    Once Earth Week is complete, I look forward to engaging your teams in broader discussions of where the campus should be going, and revising the iCAP itself. I hope that the teams can remain active over the summer (if at a more relaxed pace), using Skype as necessary. Thanks again for all your hard work!