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Projects Updates for Resilience iCAP Team

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  1. Funding Approval for Resilience Development Proposal

    Madhu Khanna and Ehab Kamarah approved $18,025 of funding from the Carbon Credit Sales Fund for a Resilience Development Proposal.

    "The Resilience Commitment, signed in 2016, was incorporated in the iCAP for the first time in the 2020 version, with a list of seven specific objectives. iSEE is the primary department responsible for helping campus achieve these ambitious goals. We request approval to fund a 20-hour/week contract with ARI to have Stacy Gloss work to develop the structure and plan for completing these objectives. The cost of a six-month agreement is $17,500" (the cost was updated with the new fiscal year due to a salary change) -Morgan White (08/13/2021)

    An email of the approval is attached below.

  2. Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan - Successful

    Ehab Kamarah, interim Executive Director of F&S, responded to Morgan White and Sherry Wooten with the following message:

    "The plan is signed and is being sent back to the County. My apology for the late response."

    See transmittal of Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan here.

    See iWG assessment of Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan here.
    See recommendation and submittal of Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan here

    For future updates on this effort, visit Champaign County Hazard Mitigation Plan.


  3. Feedback requested: EJ Focus Groups

    Kimmy Chuang sent the following email to the Environmental Justice Committee, requesting feedback on conducting focus group interviews. The draft questions and contact group documents are attached.


    Hello EJ Committee,

    Meredith and I have compiled a draft list of interview questions for small focus groups and we’d like to hear your input. A large number of questions are adapted from the Providence RI Climate Justice Plan -- which you can read here -- as well as other local surveys I’ve researched. 

    As mentioned during our last meeting, if you could please (1) approve each question (2) suggest any edits and (3) rank them in terms of priority. The full set of standard questions will be asked to the focus group. On the second page, you’ll find some other questions that we’ve been considering but aren’t sure whether to include as part of this list or only ask if time permits. If you think there is a question missing, please leave a comment. The draft questions can be found here on Box and are attached.

    As we’re finalizing these questions, Meredith and I were also thinking of starting to reach out to the people we’d like to interview. We propose hosting five focus groups for each of the constituency groups: Neighborhood Associations, Community Organizations, Government, Social Justice Groups, and Relevant UIUC Advisory Groups/Personnel. We plan to ask for one representative from each entity to attend the focus group interview (see contact list attached).

    We’re thinking of sending a Zoom invite for 12-2pm, but do you all think there would be a better time to convene the focus groups? For example, if usually people involved in Social Justice Groups or Neighborhood Associations work during the day, would it make more sense to host their focus group later from 4-6pm? With the interviewee’s consent, we will record these meetings. 

    We would love your participation in the interview process as well. We propose two or three of us per focus group interview, though are open to your thoughts. Our suggested dates for the interviews, based on our schedules, are: 

    Monday, July 26

    Tuesday, July 27 (afternoon only)

    Wednesday, July 28 

    Thursday, July 29

    Friday, July 30

    Please send me and Meredith your feedback on our draft list or interview questions and your thoughts on how/when we should convene these focus groups. We request your feedback on the interview questions by next Wednesday, July 14. We would like to contact the groups and send out the Zoom invitations as soon as possible; please send us your availability/thoughts on participating in the interviews by Monday at the latest. 

  4. Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan - Transmitted

    Following the completion of iWG assessment for Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan, the recommendation was transmitted to the Office of the Chancellor via Mike DeLorenzo on June 8, 2021. 

    See SWATeam recommendation Res001 Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan.
    See attached iWG assessment. 

  5. Environmental Vulnerability Assessment Presentation

    Irene Lira-Andsager, Jason Webb, and Daniel Xu spent the spring 2021 semester researching local environmental vulnerability factors and conducted vulnerability assessments to be included in the Environmental Justice Plan. The recording of their presentation of findings is found here (download to view). 

  6. Res002 Biodiversity Plan - Successful

    Sherry Nickols-Richardson, Director of University of Illinois Extension, sent Morgan White the following email in support of the Res002 recommendation.


    Dear Morgan,

    Thank you for sharing the Urban Biodiversity Master Plan component noted below (iCAP 202 Objective 8.1). University of Illinois Extension supports the in-kind contribution of Lisa Merrifield toward this effort through FY24. 

    Please note that Illinois Extension does not have funding to support a formal master planning process. This would need to be established and developed by F&S. If there are other implications for financial support now or in the future, Illinois Extension requests that there be discussion about these implications before any expenses are incurred.

    This will be an interesting, informative, and valuable process. I look forward to periodic reports about the progress.


    Shelly Nickols-Richardson


    See submittal and recommendation of Res002 Biodiversity Plan. 

    See transmittal of Res002 Biodiversity Plan. 

    See iWG assessment of Res002 Biodiversity Plan. 

    For future updates on this effort, visit Urban Biodiversity Master Plan.

  7. Resilience iCAP Team Meeting Minutes from 4-06-21

    The Resilience iCAP Team met on April 6th, 2021 to brainstorm ideas for public engagement for creating our first Environmental Justice Plan. Members identified important avenues for learning about local intutions on what are relevant barriers to equitable health and safety in our communities. Moving forward, the Biodiversity Plan and EJ Plan will look to possibly engage the Department of Urban Planning and other students who will work on focus group interviews over the summer. The meeting concluded with an overview of the current progress of all Resilience iCAP objectives and future steps.

    Meeting minutes and chat log are attached! 

  8. Res002 Biodiversity Plan - Transmitted

    Following the completion of iWG assessment for Res002 Biodiversity Plan, the recommendation was transmitted to Dr. Nickols-Richardson, Director of Extension, on April 12, 2021. 

    See iWG assessment of Res002 Biodiversity Plan attached. 

    See iCAP team recommendation Res002 Biodiversity Plan.


  9. Environmental Justice Plan Brainstorming Meeting 4-1-21

    The Environmental Justice Plan working group met on 4-1-21 to brainstorm the next steps of the process. The next steps for the group are to review and provide feedback on the "public input form" draft (attached). This will then be circulated around various organizations within the campus and community to ensure that the appropriate questions are asked, in the right way, and involving the right people. The group will continue to review the resilience and environmental justice indicators to refine which indices we should focus on.

    The meeting recording is found here. 

  10. Resilience iCAP Team Meeting Minutes from 3-02-21

    The Resilience iCAP Team met on March 2nd, 2021 with Vision Zero representative Stacey DeLorenzo to discuss how can the team can help accomplish zero fatalities from transportation in our communities. Updates were given on the Environmental Justice and Urban Biodiversity Plans, as well our ongoing collaboration with the Education Team to develop a sustainable communities paid internship program. The team also brainstormed ideas for how to move forward with identifying major local sustainability issues.

    Meeting minutes, agenda, and chat log are attached!


  11. Environmental Justice Plan March 2021 Brainstorming Meeting

    The Environmental Justice Working Group met on 2-26-2021 (meeting minutes attached) and discussed the next steps to move forward with environmental justice planning. These include: 

    • Review EJ plan framework and provide initial comments/feedback and think about what you wish existed
    • Review key indices that we know we can change/have control over (e.g., trees in Urbana but not influence over interstate commerce or international trade)
    • Revisit initial indicators of resilience document which address some broad environmental justice categories; review this document and give some thought to these categories (how can we address specific challenges and solutions, what data is needed to tackle these? e.g., review local control such as emergency shelters)
    • As you are researching and/or reflecting on this, consider a health angle and the overlap of environmental justice challenges
    • Here is a direct link to the EJ Box Folder where other resources are housed
  12. Data Sets - Environmental Vulnerability Assessments


    Below are data sets provided by Scott Tess and Lacey Rains Lowe to assist the student work on environmental vulnerability assessments in spring 2021. 


  13. Res002 Biodiversity Plan - Submitted

    The Resilience team made the following recommendation on 2/3/2021: 

    Lisa Merrifield at U of I Extension should coordinate the development of an urban biodiversity master plan for the local urbanized area of Urbana, Champaign, and Savoy, with broad stakeholder input and direct faculty/researcher involvement.

    Attached is the Res002 Biodiversity Plan recommendation. 

  14. Invitation to Join Discussion re: Edu002 Internship Coordinator

    Hello Education and Resilience teams,

    It was great to see many of you at the “Sustainability team open house”. We will plan another event next month so we can continue to connect and get to know each other! I am reaching out to revisit a recommendation submitted last spring by the Education team: Edu002 Internship Coordinator. When the iWG deliberated the next steps of this recommendation, it was discussed that there could be value in collaboratively discussing this idea to hear the perspectives from both the Education and Resilience teams.  

    I am writing to ask if you are interested in joining this discussion, please complete this Doodle Poll by 2/2. A summary of the recommendation is below and the full recommendation template is linked on the iCAP Portal:

    The Education team recommends developing a sustainable communities paid internship program in partnership with local businesses, non-profits, local government agencies, community-based agencies and cultural institutions in Central Illinois. 

    The internship program will be designed to build organizational capacity in the Champaign-Urbana / Central Illinois with regard to sustainability and resilience efforts to advance sustainable development and/or climate action goals. This program aims to allow students the flexibility to devise an internship experience that aligns with their specific interests within sustainability. Collaborations between the University and Champaign-Urbana community can be taken advantage of as projects where internships can be generated.

    The student interns will be involved in sustainability and community resilience efforts with directed emphasis toward sustainable development goals. Interns will gain real-world, project-based, and pre-professional experience in a workplace setting anywhere from 3 months (summer intern) to 1 year. 

    The intern program will also be tasked to provide leadership training as a foundation for real-world, project-based, and pre-professional experiences. Existing campus resources such as leadership development training modules available through Student Union programming should be utilized.

    I hope many of you are interested and willing to join the discussion! Thank you and please let me know if you have any questions.


  15. Resilience iCAP Team Meeting Minutes from 1-27-21

    The Resilience Team met on Wednesday, Jan. 27th for their first meeting of the Spring semester. Our clerk, Kimmy, proposed changes to our iCAP portal theme page and received comments from all team members. The Biodiversity Plan recommendation is in the final steps of gathering approval from every team member and will likely be submitted to the iWG this month. Lastly, the team had a brainstorming session for how to identify existing green jobs infrastructure and how to coordinate our environmental justice efforts with the community -- specifically the Sustainability Advisory Commission for the City of Urbana. 

    Agenda, meeting minutes, and chat log are attached.

  16. Environmental Justice Plan January 2021 Brainstorming Meeting

  17. Environmental Justice Plan Brainstorming Meeting

    On December 3, 2020, a small group of community and campus staff (Scott Tess, Morgan White, Ximing Cai, Sharva Hampton-Campbell, Kaamilyah Abdullah-Span, Ruby Mendenhall, Meredith Moore) brainstormed key principles of the environmental justice plan (iCAP 2020 objective 8.3). The notes from this initial meeting is attached and the group will continue to meet monthly. 

  18. Resilience Team Meeting Minutes from 12-10-20

    The Resilience Team met on December 10th and had a fruitful conversation about how to help our surrounding communities while maintaining an equal two-conversation where community, faculty, student, and governments are all heard. Comments were discussed regarding our next recommendation, the Urban Biodiversity Master Plan. 

    Agenda, meeting minutes, and chat log are attached.