On July 16, Illinois State University hosted the annual Illinois Renewable Energy Conference, and for the first time ever, the 2015 conference incorporated an energy efficiency track into the conference’s breakout sessions alongside wind, solar, biomass and geothermal. MEEA served on the conference planning committee and convened the three energy efficiency breakout sessions, which were focused on energy efficiency policies, case studies and technical information.
MEEA’s Senior Policy Manager Julia Friedman helped kick off the morning plenary session by providing an overview of energy efficiency policy in Illinois.
Energy Efficiency Case Studies
Policy Associate Leah Scull moderated the case studies panel which included presentations from Sarah Edwards, Senior Program Associate at MEEA, Chris Homan, Assistant Director in the Office of Energy Management at Illinois State University, and Cathy Milostan, Energy and Environmental Policy Scientist at Argonne National Laboratory.
These case studies were selected to show the wide breadth of opportunities for energy savings in the commercial and residential sector. Sarah Edwards, who presented “HVAC SAVE: Transforming the Iowa Residential HVAC Market,” spoke to how a program offering improved contractor training can result in higher efficiency of residential HVAC systems. Chris Homan discussed the recent energy efficiency upgrades on the ISU campus, including improved steam traps, lighting and boiler efficiency upgrades, and provided valuable lessons learned for other large facilities interested in pursuing similar upgrades. Cathy Milostan’s presentation, “Developing Midstream Incentive Projects to Promote Energy Efficiency,” included a discussion of a recently implemented pilot-program that encourages the retail sale of notched v-belts, which use less energy than traditional v-belts, to commercial and industrial customers.
Agricultural and Industrial Efficiency
During the afternoon’s final breakout session, MEEA Policy Manager Nick Dreher moderated the energy efficiency technical panel, which included presentations on industrial and agricultural efforts from Bin Wu, Director of the Missouri Industrial Assessment Center, and Yun-Sheng Xu, an associate research professor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Missouri.
Further information about these and other breakout sessions, including slideshows and presenter bios, can be found on the conference website.