EcoReps

The Office of Sustainability coordinates a number of campus greening initiatives – many related to recycling, active transportation, energy conservation, and the Tree Campus Program – that will affect each department and unit on campus.

To help facilitate communication and implementation at the unit level, we ask each department to designate a staff member to serve as a liaison – an Ecorep – to the Office of Sustainability. Click on each heading below to find out more about what Ecoreps do, the current initiatives we are promoting, and additional resources Ecoreps can use to share with their department.

Please check out the past presentation to the left to see the exciting topics we already covered!

 

    • Work within their Unit or Department to disseminate information on how to support sustainability initiatives on campus
    • Communicate with the Office of Sustainability regarding issues that arise in implementing these programs
    • Are added to a listserv to receive updates and information about the programs, and share questions
    • Attend quarterly meetings (usually lunchtime) to hear new information, share their experiences and successes, and get answers to questions.
    • Share ideas, tips, and issues with one another through the listserv.

    Potential Ecoreps should be interested in participating and promoting recycling and other outreach initiatives in their department. This person does not need to be a director or in charge of departmental resources or facilities. The ideal representative is someone who has an interest in the environment and sustainability. To become at Ecorep, ask your department head about becoming an Ecorep for your unit/department.   Sign up can be made via http://liaisons.accc.uic.edu

    Contact Kate Yoshida at kyoshi3@uic.edu for further information regarding this program.

    Find Your Ecorep: Find your department page here [http://www.uic.edu/htbin/ulist/az] and scroll down to see the Ecorep listing.

     

  • Current Initiatives

    CUB Energy Savers

    CUB Skin for Webtools

    UIC’s Office of Sustainability is teaming up with the Citizen’s Utility Board (CUB), to bring you the UIC Energy Saver Competition.  All UIC students, faculty, and staff are invited to compete for a grand prize of 6 months FREE electricity paid for by CUB.  The participant that saves the most energy over one year using CUBEnergySaver.com will win.   See the resources needed to win the CUB energy Saver Competition! Running March 2014 – March 2015.  Sign up and start saving here: www.cubenergysaver.com/teams/uic.

    UIC CUB Energy Saver presented to EcoReps February 2014

    Display the CUB Energy Saver poster around your office/ break rooms/ mailrooms.

     

    Elevate Energy

    Elevate Energy

     

    The Office of Sustainability is partnering with Elevate Energy, a local non-profit that promotes smarter energy use for Chicago homeowners.  Elevate Energy helps homeowners make smarter choices about energy.  We encourage the UIC community to see below or check out the Elevate Energy brochure to find out how Elevate Energy can help save you energy and money!

     

    Elevate Energy:

    1. Helps residents find a better electricity rate.  Are you aware of ComEd’s Residential Real-Time Pricing program?  This program takes advantage of smart meters to provide hourly pricing.  It’s saved customers an average of $100 each year since 2008, collectively saving $13 million

    2. Assists residents in using the Energy Impact Illinois (EI2) program.  This program helps residents make home energy improvements that have been shown to cut energy bills by an average of $400 per year!  Residents can have an individual energy assessment, or join with neighbors, where a certified and vetted contractor will find affordable improvements that maximize savings.

    3. Offers expert advice. Speak with an Elevate Energy advisor by visiting their website or calling 1.844.922.1222.

     

    Solar Chicago

    Solar_Chicago_Logo_on_WhiteUIC is participating in the outreach of Solar Chicago to help employees simplify the process of researching installation options for your home, while helping the City and surrounding communities achieve local and statewide sustainability goals.  The City of Chicago, in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF),  has launched Solar Chicago to bring solar electricity for homeowners into the mainstream.

    Chicago was recently designated the Earth Hour Capital of the United States by WWF for its sustainability efforts, including its focus on lowering costs for residential solar electric systems.  Solar Chicago will continue these efforts to help expand the local solar market by pooling the power of the community to make solar easy and more affordable than ever for homeowners in the program area.

    Lower Cost:

    A discounted price achieved (25%) by pooling the purchasing power of groups, and an additional incentive rebate that provides increased savings as more people contract for solar electricity on their homes.

    After vetting several solar companies, a volunteer community evaluation committee has selected the team of Juhl Renewable Energy Systems and Microgrid Solar as Solar Chicago’s installation partner.  Serving individual customers in a group through Solar Chicago allows these companies to reduce their costs- savings that they will pass along to participants with residential solar pricing starting at $3.49 per-watt- more than a 25% discount off the average cost of going solar.

    The Juhl Renewable Energy System/ Microgrid Solar team also includes the experience of local electrical contractor/ installation partners Ailey Solar and Kapital Electric.  Collectively, these solar installation contractors have completed over 300 residential solar projects in the last 12 months totaling more than 1.2 megawatts!  In addition to the significant qualifications they bring to the Solar Chicago program, the Juhl Renewable Energy Systems/ Microgrid Solar team will also offer financing solutions to homeowners through Admirals Bank.

    Next steps:

    1. Sign up.  If you have not signed up for Solar Chicago, please visit the program website to register.  Once registered, you will be connected with Juhl Energy/Microgrid Solar to schedule your site evaluation and receive a proposal.  Please note that registration does not obligate you moving forward.

    2. Learn more.  Join the program sponsors and the Juhl/Microgrid team to learn about the basics of residential solar and have your questions answered at an upcoming workshop this summer.  Event details can be found on the News page of the program website.  If you are unable to attend, a pre-recorded webinar will also be posted for your review.

    3. Spread the Word.  Solar Chicago pools the purchasing power of groups to make solar more affordable.  More participants means a better deal for you and more clean, reliable solar power for your community. In addition to the standard discounted program pricing, if the group collectively installs a minimum of 100 kilowatts of new solar capacity, the Juhl/Microgrid Solar team will provide each homeowner with an additional cash incentive.  If the group collectively installs more than 400 kilowatts of solar, the incentive rebate will double!

    It’s that simple.  Solar Chicago’s technical advisors are available to answer any questions you have throughout the program.

    More participants mean a better deal for you and more, clean, reliable solar power for our community.  Please help us spread the word about Solar Chicago to your co-workers, friends, family and neighbors!  Should you have any questions, please contact solarchicago@votesolar.org.

     

     

  • Resources

    These are presentations from past Ecorep trainings:

    Recycling at UIC

    Office Max- greener choices for office products

    Gordon Flesch- copiers and toner recycling

    Allsteel- sustainability company and product features

    Food Scrap Composting at UIC

  • 4/3/14

    Due to popular demand, the 4/3/14 meeting featured a panel on property disposal which included Jeff Weaver, Sr. Assoc. Dir, University Property Accounting and Reporting OBFS, Janet Ayers, Accountant, OBFS, Joe Iosbaker, Office of Sustainability Recycling Coordinator, Kathy Russell, Zone 1 Facilities Manager, and Craig Jackson, Exec. Director, IT LAS.  Please refer to Minutes for detailed notes.

    Your input on FABweb and the UIC equipment disposal process is important.  Please take this three question survey, at the bottom of the Current Initiatives page, the results of which will be shared with Jeff for planning and training purposes.

    The 4/3/14 meeting featuring a panel discussion on property disposal which included Jeff Weaver, Sr. Assoc. Dir, University Property Accounting and Reporting OBFS, Janet Ayers, Accountant, OBFS, Joe Iosbaker, Office of Sustainability Recycling Coordinator, Kathy Russell, Zone 1 Facilities Manager, and Craig Jackson, Exec. Director, IT LAS. Their comments are summarized below.

    Jeff Weaver: Property records are required by state law, University policy, and governmental and financial accounting standards. Equipment is a substantial part of UIC balance sheet- 231,500 Banner records with 25,000 tagged/tracked items added annually. There are audits on equipment conducted nearly all the time, and are a source of recurring audit findings. Units are responsible for disposing of unneeded equipment. His presentation at Bringing Administrators Together, (2014) provides a thorough treatment of the regulations and importance of  timely, accurate property accounting- from acquisition to disposal.

     

    Janet Ayers:  Disposing of Equipment- Use FABweb surplus/disposal form for tracked and un-tracked equipment.  Unneeded equipment CANNOT be given away, thrown away, or sold. FABweb (Automated workflow with Representatives & Approvers) gets easier with experience.  Backup documentation required for: Stolen items, trade-ins, or transfers with researcher. Please contact her for assistance.  Common disposals Issues, which often arise due to staff turnover include: untimely disposal, approvals not completed timely in FABweb, Banner/tracked item submitted as Non-Banner, items put in garbage, data-wiping not completed appropriately, and no record keeping retained in unit.

    Disposals Best Practices

    •Consistent process for handling in unit

    •Separate duties of Representatives & Approvers

    •Use FABweb “Check Status” functionality to keep process moving

    •Safeguard equipment throughout process

    •Use FABweb “save to excel” for file retention

    •Review recent transactions for completion

     

    Joe Iosbaker: In September, we set a day for east side and a day for west side to collect equipment.  Departments can bring their own items (with proper paperwork completed) for disposal. This year, several departments suggested that the truck be sent to them rather than bringing their hundreds of items to our location. We were able to arrange this.

    People desire stream liningCords, chargers, cables, keyboards and mice should be boxed together and listed separately from the hard drive or monitor. However, power supplies should remain with laptops.

    Joe is willing to consult with departments who either have only a few items, or who have their own staff willing to move things to surplus/scrap.

     

    Kathy Russell: Kathy knows the disposal process from both sides.  She encourages departments not to be intimidated by the process, and to tackle those big jobs (ie the rooms full of stuff).  It’s handy to have a binder with all the records and PHOTOS of the equipment/furniture for faster identification.  If you accumulate things for disposal at one time, keep the room organized so you can get at everything easily.

     

    Craig Jackson: Craig suggests that too much procurement is done on p-cards which are not in Banner vs. iBuy. Training for staff turnover rests with the departments.  Perhaps every six months an announcement could go to the department(s) to remind them to make sure the person responsible has been trained.   Craig suggests finding out if a “window” of time for movers to come for the equipment could be made, such as with the cable company.  This would make it easier for staff responsible to be ready.  He also would like to investigate times that, in general, are less busy for the movers to avoid delays in pickups.  A once a year “thank you” breakfast and training for responsible staff could go a long way towards maintaining up to date disposal and recordkeeping.

    Is it possible to have a “Furniture Day/Week” organized within colleges/large departments to say “here’s the target” for getting rid of stuff.

     

    Suggestions for everyone:

    Call the Supervisor or Movers at 6-2841 to arrange an estimate

    Call Joe Iosbaker to consult/strategize- 3-9816

    Call Janet for help on FABweb- 6-2858

     

  • OBFS Equipment Disposal Survey