Thursday, July 19, 2007

Notes: Meeting, July 18 '07

Meeting Notes

July 18, 2007

In attendance:
Sonia Marcus
Ron Chapman
Jarrod Pollard
Laura Allen
Amanda Annis
Kim Brown

  • Jarrod's update: hasn't been working in the office this past week. Had issues posting to the blog because he couldn't remember his user name.
  • On the budget issues, Ron talked to Julie about archival data. She said OU posts financial statements on the web. They're on there now, but the links aren't active. Sonia said she thinks that's due to the fact that they've just overhauled their site. Someone should let them know that the links aren't active.
  • Julie said that April Henderson is the person to contact directly for archival budget info.
  • Question: Is same info available for branch campuses? Not clear yet. Ron will floow up with Julie.
  • Kim says that individual colleges have hard copy reports of budgets filed at Alden. April has these too in her office, acc to Ron.
  • Laura's update: didn't get a task from Ron this past week, but is planning to work on the square footage data once Ron shows it to her. Note that square footage data will need to be compared back to figures from institutional research. Ron has those figures.
  • Kim's update: Fred Kight would like her to come to WOUB News Watch to talk about the EEC's role in the President's Climate Commitment. She will discuss what this group has been up to so far.
  • Kim also met with the CEO of the Chicago Climate Exchange last week because they are looking for a forestry person. She said that a number of colleges and universities including Michigan State have joined the CCX, and that we might want to consider that. Sonia and Ron shared some info about past discussions that have taken place at OU regarding that. One benefit of joining that Kim pointed out was the possibility of selling offset credits at the CCX if we are able to reduce our own GHG emissions past the 6% (per year) required. Could be an additional incentive to do forestry projects, for example. However, we could not then count those as our own offsets if we were to sell them off. Can't do both.
  • The Russ College has appointed Kevin Crist as the representative of the college to the PCC sub-committee of the EEC. Kevin has expressed interest over the years in having OU join the CCX.
  • Amy wasn't present, but Ron updated us on some of her findings and progress (posted on the blog! Go Amy!): All the data we use for the spreadsheet should be in fiscal years, acc to CA-CP. That makes it easier for us. Also, they were able to clarify what they mean by "efficiency". In house use of steam is included. Again, that makes things easier.
  • Ron pointed out that industry efficiency standards are 80% for overall steam efficiency and 35% for produced electricity.
  • Sonia's update: Sorry about not posting last week's meeting notes yet. Will be more prompt in the future. Sonia is meeting with Bruce Nottke and Marty Paulins, the new hires in the Transportation & Parking department on Monday to discuss sustainability issues. Amanda will be there too to talk to them about our data needs for the GHG emissions inventory.
  • Amanda would like to investigate GHG data as concerns the airport and air travel. Amanda and Ron will meet in the next few days to discuss those data needs. Then Amanda will get in touch with the appropriate contact person there.
  • Ron pointed out that getting independent travel info that will be useful to our inventory is going to be VERY DIFFICULT. We instituted use of the Oracle system 2 years ago, so that data is searchable, but everything before that is in hard copy. Also, Oracle just gives you dollar values for travel, and nothing like miles traveled or destination. That might be added to the form in the future but we still won't know for all past travel.
  • Kim suggested that it might be interesting to do a regression analysis to figure out whether there would be a reliable conversion factor for dollars to GHG emissions. Perhaps that could be a project in the fall seminar.
  • VP Bill Decatur recently required all departments under his command to submit travel plans for the upcoming year in advance. That has specific destination info in it. Maybe the other VP's have made similar moves? Worth asking.
  • We should also ask the CA-CP people whether other schools have tried to determine a conversion factor for $$ to GHG emissions for travel.
  • Sonia let the group know that there was a possible summit of IUC schools in the works for October here at OU to discuss implementation of house bill 251. More on that soon. Also, Sonia will be meeting with the sustainability coordinators at Oberlin and OSU (and possibly Miami) on July 30th to touch base.
  • Kim suggested that we include University of Cincinnati and figure out what they're up to and how they are approaching the PCC there.


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