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Projects Updates for iCAP Working Group (iWG)


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  1. Agenda for meeting

    Associated Project(s): 

    iCAP Working Group

    Thursday, December 4, 2014

    358 NSRC, 1:30-3:00 pm

    1. Update on Wind RFP ; Recommendation to Sustainability Council?
    2. Update on AEI Utilities Master Plan report
    3. 2015 iCAP Revisions
      1. Timeline
      2. Discussion of goals and objectives
      3. Requests for SWATeams
    4. Scheduling Spring meetings
      1. Proposed: 1/15, 1/29, 3/12, 4/9, 5/7
    5. Other business


  2. note from Ben to iWG

    Dear iWG Members,

    We meet again this Thursday from 1:30-3:00, as usual in NSRC 358. Our lone agenda item will be going through the draft 2015 iCAP that Morgan, Stephanie, Nishant, and I (collectively known as the iCAP Drafting Committee) are assembling based on the SWATeam recommendations.

    I expect to send you a complete draft sometime tonight.  It's looking like it will be in the neighborhood of ~40 pages, and I hope you will be able to carve out some time to go through it carefully before Thursday afternoon.  It's okay if you'd like to share it with some of the people in the group you represent on the iWG to get their input, but if you do so please emphasize that it is a very early draft.  As a working draft, it should ideally not be widely circulated.  It would be great if you could embed comments in the Word document and return it to me before our iWG meeting.

    I will go over the draft at our meeting in the form of a PowerPoint presentation, analogous to how we envision doing so at the Sustainability Council meeting on December 8th.  I think this will also be a good format for us to discuss any contentious points in the draft.

    My plan is to incorporate your high-level comments from our meeting, together with your detailed comments in the Word document, into a revised draft that I will try to send to the SWATeams on Friday to get their feedback.  We will then incorporate their feedback and try to get you a new draft on the 1st or 2nd, so we can discuss it again at our meeting on the 4th.

    Thanks again for all your help, and I'll be sending you a draft sometime tonight!



  3. F&S response to iWG request

    Hi Ben,

    Thanks for your letter from the iWG about the Utilities Master Plan (attached for reference). 

    F&S shares the iWG’s concerns with the slow pace of getting an acceptable draft product from AEI.  This has taken much longer than the original goal of completion; however, it is important to have an accurate and good quality report even if it takes longer than planned.  The scope of this study was developed in cooperation with the Office of Sustainability, and approved by FY12 Acting Director of the Office of Sustainability, Associate Chancellor Pradeep Khanna.  It is attached here for your records, as well as the executed contract.

    It has always been our intention to share the draft report with campus stakeholders, especially those participating in campus sustainability efforts.  Once we get an acceptable product, we will share it with the SWATeam and iWG for feedback.  At this time, we expect to have a draft ready to share later this month. 




  4. iWG request to F&S

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear Al,

    I am writing with another request (see attached) from the iCAP Working Group, but I also wanted to take this opportunity to thank you and Kent for arranging to have an iWG representative on the selection panel for the wind PPA RFP.  I sincerely hope that our input will be helpful, and I look forward to working with that team!



  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. Minutes from September

    Associated Project(s): 

    Dear iCAP Working Group,

    First of all, I'd like to invite each of you to join us for the iCAP Forum from 1-4 pm on October 22 (Campus Sustainability Day), where the SWATeams will present their recommendations for the 2015 iCAP.  More details are appended below, along with a link to the RSVP form.  I hope you can join us!

    Second, I attach the minutes from our last meeting.  I apologize for the delay in getting these to you, but iSEE has been swamped in the past few weeks as we hosted both a Congress on sustainable agriculture and a roundtable on sustainability education.  Please let us know by October 15 if you have any corrections.

    Finally, I wanted to let you know that Morgan recommended separating the wind PPA process issue from the utilities master plan issue.  I took her advice, and sent the attached letter on the wind PPA process to Al Stratman today; I will follow up in ~10 days with a separate letter about the master plan.

    Thanks again for your service on the working group!



    Join us at iSEE’s iCAP Forum

    What has the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus done to reach its Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) goals? Where have we fallen short? What’s next?

    It’s time to update the iCAP, and we need input as we evaluate where we are — and where we want to be. The Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment (iSEE) invites you to attend a iCAP Forum from 1 to 4 p.m. Oct. 22 — Sustainability Day — in Illini Union Room 314B. The event is an opportunity for the Sustainability Working Advisory Teams (SWATeams) to seek public input on their proposed 2015 revisions to the 2010 iCAP, and for iSEE to recognize sustainability leaders on campus through the Certified Green Office Program and the Energy Conservation Incentive Program.

    All faculty, staff, students and community members are invited to attend the forum and give valuable feedback to SWATeams. We need campuswide investment in the sustainability movement as we target ambitious goals here, including carbon neutrality by 2050. RSVP at

    Attached Files: 
  8. iWG follow up letter

    Dear Al,

    Attached please find a reply from the iCAP Working Group regarding the wind PPA process.

    By the way, thanks so much for your participation in iSEE's Roundtable this week...sorry we didn't get a chance to chat!




    Professor Benjamin J. McCall

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


  9. iWG agenda packet

  10. F&S response to iWG assessment

    This letter is in response to the Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) Working Group (iWG) recommendation #EG001, which Facilities & Services (F&S) received on August 28.  F&S agrees that the campus should investigate the feasibility of entering into a Wind Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to increase the use of renewable energy for campus. 

    Regarding the EG001 general statements about campus energy use, data points, and assessments of anticipated financial impacts, F&S will need more time to compile a useful response.  Regarding the three specific EG001 recommendations, I have consulted with Al Stratman, Kent Reifsteck, and Mike Larson to provide the responses below. 

    1. Recommendation: “The campus should undertake a Power Purchase Agreement for wind energy. Based on currently available information, we recommend that the amount be at least 119 million kWh per year (25% of our total electrical usage), but we should aim to purchase as much as we possibly can, given any technical, financial, and contractual constraints.”

    From this recommendation, we understand that the iWG recommends entering into a Wind PPA for at least 25% of the FY15 electrical demand.  However, the campus cannot make an informed decision about whether or not to undertake a PPA until the financial impact is fully understood.  A key component of the financial impact is the fully burdened cost of the purchased wind power, which will not be known until after the successful completion of the Request for Proposal (RFP) process.  Therefore, F&S does support pursuing a PPA so the feasibility can be evaluated, but we do not support making a final decision to undertake a PPA until completely evaluating the financial implications.

    1. Recommendation: “The effort to secure a PPA should be pursued as quickly as possible. The campus should inform PEI that this is a top priority, and that the review of RFI submittals and the issuance of the RFP should be expedited by all necessary means.”

    During this summer, F&S worked with PEI to define a schedule for issuing a Request for Information (RFI) and a subsequent Request for Proposals (RFP).  This schedule shows a completion date of April 2015, so that the PPA could commence with delivery of power on July 1, 2015, at the start of FY16.  We have informed PEI that this is a top priority, along with safety and reliability of the overall campus energy system.

    1. Recommendation: “The iCAP Working Group should be kept informed and advised during the process of pursuing the RFI, RFP, and PPA, and given the opportunity to provide recommendations before key decisions are made about the PPA, to ensure that technical and financial considerations are appropriately balanced with our campus sustainability objectives.”

    F&S values the advice and input from sustainability advocates on campus.  Therefore, we suggest developing a set of interim checkpoints for keeping the iWG informed as the process unfolds.

    To meet our Climate Commitment and achieve carbon neutrality, there is a lot of work that needs to be done.  I look forward to working with the iWG and the SWATeams as this recommendation is pursued.


    Morgan B. Johnston

    Associate Director of Sustainability, F&S

  11. EGen001 Wind PPA recommendation - Transmittal to the unit

    The SWATeam recommendation complete with the iWG Assessment with comments from all the iWG members was transmitted to the Facilities & Services on August 28th, 2014.

    For any future updates on this item, please visit the Wind Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) project.

    See iWG Assessment for EGen001 Wind PPA here.

    See SWATeam recommendation EGen001 Wind PPA here.

  12. EGen001 Wind PPA recommendation - Assessment with all comments

    The iCAP Working Group (iWG) met on August 28th, 2014, to discuss the EGen001 Wind PPA recommendation, and they started the assessment for this recommendation. 

    See the attached file for complete assessment with comments from all the iWG members.

    See SWATeam recommendation EGen001 Wind PPA here.


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