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Projects Updates for Energy iCAP Team

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  1. Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan - Successful

    Following is the response from Dr. Ehab Kamarah (on May 5, 2023) regarding the Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan recommendation.

    Dear Dr. Fraterrigo,

    We agree that this summary of current efforts towards carbon-neutral energy will be helpful, and we will coordinate the development of this document.



    Read the iWG Transmittal update for the Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan recommendation here.

  2. ASHRAE Publishes First Zero Energy and Zero Carbon Building Evaluation Standard




    ASHRAE Publishes First Zero Energy and Zero Carbon Building Evaluation Standard


    ATLANTA (April 27, 2023) – ASHRAE has released a new standard to measure zero net carbon and energy goals in buildings.


    ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 228-2023, Standard Method of Evaluating Zero Net Energy and Zero Net Carbon Building Performance, sets requirements for evaluating whether a building or group of buildings meets a definition of “zero net energy” or a definition of “zero net carbon” during building operation. The standard draws from ASHRAE Standard 105, among others, to address energy and carbon flows across a site boundary, their measurement, and their balance.


    “Achieving a zero energy building has been viewed by many as a difficult goal to meet, with unforeseeable roadblocks and differing guidance,” said Keith Emerson, P.E., Life Member ASHRAE, chair of the Standards Project Committee 228. Standard 228 provides a consistent method for determining whether new and existing sites have reached zero energy. We hope this standard will become a helpful resource for building professionals in strategic decarbonization planning.”


    Additional features of Standard 228 are as follows:


    • Allowances for sites that lack the opportunity to produce adequate renewable energy, while placing additional requirements on the use of external carbon and renewable energy in the calculation.
    • Defined calculation of energy in terms of source—a multiplier on the energy crossing the site boundary to include energy used or lost in extraction, generation and transit to the site.
    • The main energy calculation made in terms of annual average factors. Allowance is made for the calculation of individual hours where data is available.


    Standard 228 does not apply to the establishment of building energy performance goals or limits; design guidance or design requirements; embodied energy of building materials and systems; and transportation to and from a building. The standard is also not intended to circumvent any safety, health, or environmental requirements.


    To purchase Standard 228-2023, visit or contact ASHRAE Customer Contact Center at 1-800-527-4723 (United States and Canada), 404-636-8400 (worldwide) or fax 678-539-2129.


    Standard 228 has been published on continuous maintenance. A Standing Standard Project Committee (SSPC 228) has been formed to update the standard through the publication of addenda or revisions to any part of the standard. SSPC 228 is chaired by Dr. Paul Torcellini. Instructions for how to submit a change can be found on the ASHRAE website at


    About ASHRAE

    Founded in 1894, ASHRAE is a global professional society committed to serve humanity by advancing the arts and sciences of heating ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration and their allied fields.


    As an industry leader in research, standards writing, publishing, certification and continuing education, ASHRAE and its members are dedicated to promoting a healthy and sustainable built environment for all, through strategic partnerships with organizations in the HVAC&R community and across related industries.


    The Society is showcasing integrated building solutions and sustainability in action through the opening of the ASHRAE Global Headquarters building in metro-Atlanta, Georgia.


    For more information and to stay up-to-date on ASHRAE, visit and connect on Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.


    Big news from ASHRAE:


    Ralph DiNola



    Hi Team,


    Came across this announcement from ASHRAE this morning and pertains to our recent discussions.

    I don’t have access to the full standard. Maybe Damon has access to the full pdf.





    Saw this too, pretty interesting and worthwhile read!

    I don’t have the full PDF yet but have access to the site to purchase it as a member, but perhaps F&S would be willing to do so?



    It would be great to have it. I also interested to know more.





  3. Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan - Transmitted

    On 4/10/2023, the Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan recommendation was transmitted to Dr. Ehab Kamarah, Associate Vice Chancellor and Executive Director of Facilities & Services, with the following email. The iWG assessment is attached. 

    Dear Dr. Kamarah,

    The Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) Working Group (iWG) recently approved recommendation Energy011 from the Energy iCAP Team to develop a short document describing the feasibility and overall effectiveness of energy efficient technologies and practices being considered for UIUC. This information brief is expected to help identify next steps for propelling UIUC forward in its carbon-neutrality goals, and provide university leadership with key points concerning the various options for meeting campus’s climate commitments. Additional details are provided in the attached recommendation.

    The Formal iCAP Procedures include a section on campus unit responsibilities upon receipt of a recommendation, and we respectfully request your response to this recommendation by May 5, if possible. If you have any questions regarding this recommendation, please let us know. 


    Jennifer Fraterrigo



    Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP)

    iCAP Working Group co-chairs

    University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    See the Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan recommendation here.

    Attached Files: 
  4. Energy iCAP Meeting 3/27/2023

    The Energy iCAP team met on Monday 3/27/23 to discuss recommendations on energy standards for newly constructed buildings and improving communication of energy research on campus between labs and the broader campus community.

    View the recording:

  5. Energy010 Establishment of a Clean Energy Plan Conference Committee - Withdrawn

    Energy010 was withdrawn by the Energy iCAP Team in February prior to being discussed at iWG meeting. See below the email from the Energy iCAP Team:

    I am writing on behalf of the Energy iCAP Team to let you know that we wish to withdraw ENERGY 010 from consideration at the upcoming February IWG Meeting. During discussion at our January Energy meeting, our team concluded that Energy 010 is better incorporated into a recommendation that we are currently developing, and that we hope to submit for consideration later this spring.


    Tyler Swanson

    See the Energy010 Establishment of a Clean Energy Plan Conference Committee recommendation here.

  6. 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

  7. Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan - Submitted

    The Energy iCAP Team submitted the attached recommendation Energy011 Priority Technologies and Practices for a Clean Energy Plan to the iWG on 12/1/22. The attached recommendation states:

    The Energy iCAP Team recommends that F&S and any external consulting group consider the feasibility and overall effectiveness of the following technologies and practices in the development of a clean energy plan for the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign:

    • Energy Conservation & Energy Efficiency
    • Micro-nuclear energy
    • Geothermal Energy
    • Hydrogen Fuel
    • Energy Efficiency Renovations
    • Expansion of solar energy production
    • Wind energy
    • Carbon capture and sequestration
    • Power Purchasing Agreements
  8. Energy iCAP Team Meeting 12/2/22

    The Energy iCAP Team met on Friday, December 2nd, 2022 to discuss potential recommendations on standards for new buildings and developing a committee of energy researchers to share knowledge across campus.

  9. Energy010 Establishment of a Clean Energy Plan Conference Committee - Submitted

    The Energy iCAP Team submitted the Energy010 Establishment of a Clean Energy Plan Conference Committee recommendation on 11/30/22. The recommendation is as follows:

    Establish a committee of faculty, staff, and students charged with the following responsibilities:

    • Identification of experts on energy conservation and clean energy technologies both on and off campus
    • Recruitment of identified experts to speak about their area of expertise to the UIUC campus community
    • Development of a conference focused on energy conservation and clean energy technologies that will be available to the campus community.

    The recommendation document is attached.

  10. Energy009 MMR Safety and Security - Declined

    The Energy009 MMR Safety and Security recommendation was declined on 11/14/22 with the following email:


    Good afternoon Energy iCAP Team,

    This fall, there were discussions revisiting the Energy009 MMR Safety and Security which the team submitted in the spring semester.

    The iWG had robust discussions and representatives from the College of Engineering talked with their team; from our group perspective, addressing safety is something that will happen but does not warrant a recommendation until the project can move forward. Safety is inherently a part of the process.

    This will be updated on the iCAP Portal accordingly, and please reach out if you have any questions.

    Thank you,


    See the submittal of Energy009 MMR Safety and Security here. 

  11. Energy iCAP Team Recommendations to Improve Energy Efficiency

    Below is an email exchange between Tyler Swanson and Karl Helmink:

    Hello Karl,


    My name is Tyler Swanson, and I am the clerk for the Energy iCAP Team. I am reaching out to you today to hear your thoughts on a couple of ideas myself and the energy team chairs have had for improving energy efficiency on campus.


    First, would it be feasible to recommend a facilities standard that requires any new buildings to be either net-zero or to have the capacity to generate clean energy on sight, such as solar or geothermal? This was thought of as a way to reduce the energy impact of developing new buildings across campus.


    Second, would it be feasible to recommend a facilities standard that sets a higher energy standard for new buildings and renovations on campus? I saw that CEJA requires the state of Illinois to create a new stretch code by the end of 2023, and I wondered if there have been any conversations about this at F&S.


    Thank you for your time!





    Tyler Swanson




    My comments would be that both of these topics have been discussed in the past.


    1. The codes set the standard for energy consumption and I think that we still have a campus standard that asks for us to be x% above the code.   It is more cost effective to have a solar farm than to put panels on each new building.  My best thought / suggestion would be to spend say $20 million a year on fixing old buildings (deferred maintenance)  and installing new modern systems and retire say 1960-1980 energy intensive mechanical systems. The net zero buildings are very expensive.  So  in my opinion a better way to spend the money would be to upgrade/ renovate existing structure rather than building new buildings which add to the campus square footage.  Net zero buildings are very expensive and potentially take money away from energy saving deferred maintenance projects like ESCOs.


    1. You guys should probably understand the history on this item.  Tom can probably help with that.  Staying with professional codes/standards such as ASHRAE is probably the most viable option at this point. It might be worthwhile inviting Tom to a meeting to discuss the latest on the codes.  There is some history on this subject.






  12. Campus Sustainability Celebration - 10/17/22

    The 2022 Campus Sustainability Celebration was a huge success! Thank you to all who participated! The PowerPoint presentation is attached, and the agenda for the event was as follows:

    • 3-3:15 PM – Welcome
      • Jennifer Fraterrigo, on behalf of Director Madhu Khanna (iSEE)
      • Chancellor Jones
      • Vice Chancellor Susan Martinis (OVCRI)
    • 3:15 – 3:30 PM – Holistic initiatives
      • Plastic reduction (Jen)
      • Clean energy/Solar Farm 3 (Morgan)
      • Greener Campus Program (Meredith)
    • 3:30 – 4:40 PM – iCAP Team presentations
      • Energy
      • Transportation
      • Land and Water
      • Zero Waste
      • Education
      • Engagement
      • Resilience
    • 4:40 – 5 PM – Student groups (SSLC, SSC) – Jack Reicherts and Maiah Caise
      • Closing remarks by Jennifer Fraterrigo (on behalf of Madhu Khanna)
    • 5 – 6 PM – Celebration - refreshments, roundtable forum with each iCAP Team, student tabling session  
  13. Energy iCAP Team Meeting 10/7/2022

    The energy iCAP team met on Friday, October 7th 2022 to review the team's presentation for the campus sustainability celebration, review the team's priorities for the year, and discuss options for advancing the proposed clean energy plan and increasing procurement of renewable energy through power purchasing agreements.

    Link to meeting recording:

  14. Urban Biodiversity Master Plan Student Support

    Biodiversity Plan intern Gabriel Harper-Hagen is looking for students and student groups to help him develop two iNaturalist surveys for the project. Here is the detailed explanation from Gabe:

    The survey will act as a pilot for future surveying around campus and the broader community. We will have two surveys: one focused on animals and one focused on plants. This is because of the different methods of surveying each. The surveys will benefit from as many students that would be interested in this for either one (Or both). The survey will attempt to efficiently gather data about the diversity of plant and animal species found on campus to create a baseline for what is present and to help identify gaps on the campus where diversity may be lacking. If successful, I hope to expand the model to other parts of the community including the park districts to have larger community based BioBlitz seasonally to keep track of the diversity in the area and measure success of the biodiversity plan. 


    As far as students can help, we need enough people to survey the area efficiently in a reasonable amount of time. The student groups and individual students would be helping in an initial survey that focuses only on the campus. My thought is that a date will be set for each of the two surveys where the participants can join to go over brief instructions on identifying plants with iNaturalist, adding them to the project, and explaining the purpose of surveying. iNaturalist allows for specific project data to be collected within a region which is then peer reviewed. Ideally, there will be some experts (students or professors if appropriate) that join for each survey to help with logistics and identification. I hope this will not only be a useful database for our campus to utilize, but also a fun learning experience. 


    All iCAP students and environmental student groups are encouraged to participate. If interested, please email Gabe ( and Resilience iCAP Team clerk Asli Topuzlu ( 

  15. iCAP Team Priority Areas 2022-2023

    The following email was sent to the iCAP Teams:

    Hello iCAP Teams,

    Thank you again for serving on these important campus sustainability committees, and for your commitment to helping the university achieve the objectives in the Illinois Climate Action Plan.  As promised in the charge letters you received, we are attaching the Key Priorities Document here.  The attached document includes a section for each iCAP Team, with two parts in each section: Priority areas and in progress iCAP Portal projects.

    1. Priority Areas

    In order to help our campus move from STARS Gold to STARS Platinum, we have identified priority areas where our university can potentially improve. iSEE’s summer intern Tyler evaluated the latest UIUC STARS report and identified example case studies from STARS Platinum schools.  Tyler’s report is online at “Report on Improving UIUC STARS Score.” The priority areas also include topics for potential recommendations that have been brought up in previous discussions with the campus sustainability teams.  One example of this is the current efforts to reduce plastic waste on campus.

    Many prior iCAP team members have expressed a desire for guidance on appropriate topics for recommendations, so we are providing this guidance to assist your team with focus areas for development of recommendations.  We encourage you to investigate these ideas with gusto; reach out to people at other schools to learn more about the ideas and contact people on our campus who would have a stake in the project (“stakeholders”) to understand how it could fit into our campus. You should also review the recommendation template to see the information that needs to be completed when you submit a recommendation to the iCAP Working Group. 

    1. In progress iCAP Portal projects

    The iCAP Portal has over 900 projects and contains information about our campus sustainability efforts, going back as far as 2003. The information is primarily entered by members of the iCAP Teams, the Student Sustainability Committee (SSC), and a few volunteers.  We are requesting your assistance to get updates on some of the projects that are listed as “In Progress.”  For each of the projects listed in the attached file, please answer the following questions:

    • Who is the current contact person? The project records on the iCAP Portal may provide past contacts, and your team members may have relevant information.
    • Is the project completed? If not, what is the current status of the effort?
    • What changes are needed on the iCAP Portal project page content? Pictures would be particularly nice to be able to share on the Portal.

    We are very excited about this coming year, and we want to support you in any way necessary.  Please reach out to any of us at any time.

    Thank you,

    Morgan, Jen, and Meredith

  16. iCAP Team Charge Letters 2022-2023

    iSEE Director, Madhu Khanna, sent out the seven iCAP Team charge letters for the 2022-2023 academic year (attached). 

    "Thank you once again for your service in helping to make the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign a more sustainable campus. Attached is your charge letter for the 2022-2023 academic year with an outline of your campus sustainability duties as part of the iCAP Team. We look forward to your positive and impactful contributions."