Electrify Chicago is an independent open-source project looking to shed light onto one of the biggest sources of Chicago's CO2 emissions - buildings. By providing more information about some of the city's largest and most polluting buildings, we hope t encourage these buildings to electrify, particularly by mobilizing people related to the building - whether that be students and faculty for a college building or employees and patients at a hospital.
Our Goal: Get Large Buildings to Electrify & Use Less Energy
In simple terms, because we can scalably produce electricity without emitting CO2 and exacerbating the climate crisis. In fact, this decade (the 2020s) is an especially crucial one for tackling climate change (“World Has Less Than a Decade to Stop Catastrophic Warming…” | The New York Times), and shifting away from burning fossil fuels to using electricity today is a crucial step in that journey.
Even better, Illinois' grid in particular is already powered mostly by carbon-free energy and is improving every year!
Source: Illinois Power | Decarb My State
This means that buildings using only electricity cause less emissions every year as the power grid is moved to carbon-free sources, without any further changes to the building. On the other hand, fossil-fuel powered appliances will continue to emit as long as they are used.
Electrify Chicago is an independent project and not affiliated with or endorsed by the City of Chicago.
Data is primarily sourced from the publicly available Chicago Energy Benchmarking Data , which is data collected and published under the Chicago Energy Benchmarking Ordinance . This site shows data for the year 2021 (the latest available of March 2023) and filtered down to buildings with total emissions > 1,000 metric tons CO2 equivalent.
Found a bug or have a feature request? File an issue on the Electrify Chicago GitHub!
There are a lot of interesting ways to view this data, here are a few pages that aren't featured in our header but could be useful: