Solar Farms in Illinois
Access Clean Energy from Local Solar Farms
Solar Farms in Illinois provide lower costs and clean energy independence
There are plenty of people in Illinois who want to power their homes with renewable energy, which means we need solar farms to keep the electricity flowing!
Between 2020 and 2021, utility companies in Illinois have exponentially increased their solar capacity by over 250 megawatts, and they’re showing no signs of stopping.
According to trends, Illinois is expected to increase solar capacity state-wide by over 1,700% in the next five years. There’s even legislation in place requiring 25% of all energy production in the state to come from renewable sources, including solar, by 2025!
Notable Solar Farms in Illinois
The Grand Ridge Solar Plant was built in 2012 and is one of the largest photovoltaic (fancy word for solar) projects in the country. It’s large enough to generate 20 megawatts of energy—enough to power 3,077 Illinois homes! This impressive farm is located about 80 miles southwest of Chicago.
The Rockford Solar Project is another major solar farm powering Illinois homes. It was built on top of a former landfill just outside of the city of Rockford. This major installation contains over 6,600 solar panels, pumping around three megawatts of energy into the public grid, which is enough to power almost 500 homes.
Expanding Access for Solar to Everyone in Illinois
In total, there are around 38,000 solar installations that dot the Illinois landscape, all generating clean, renewable energy to keep the Prairie State moving. Many of these farms are community solar projects that allow people to subscribe to the project and receive power based on the level of their subscription.
In Illinois, low-income homeowners can even participate in community solar programs at a discounted rate by taking advantage of the Solar for All Low-Income Community Solar Program. While most community solar members pay a subscription, people who qualify for the program can participate in an Illinois community solar project with $0 upfront costs!
Community solar isn’t just great for Illinois residents who want to use solar power. It’s also great for property owners who want to help their neighbors, the environment, and themselves! By installing a community solar project on your property, you can enjoy a drastic reduction (elimination) of your energy bills and supply power to your community. Plus, all the tax-breaks and incentives don’t hurt either!
Solar Farms in Illinois provide clean energy at a discount!
There’s no doubt that Illinois is on track to boost renewable energy. However, the reality is that most people — about 80% of Americans — cannot access solar power on their rooftops. This includes people who are renting or who have to move frequently, rooftops that are not the right size, type, or exposure, and of course limitations by the financially viable and affordable options.
In order to reach the goals of making the state more energy independent and the environment cleaner, MA must innovate.
Community solar is a new approach that makes solar energy accessible to all, by connecting people to local solar farms.
Community Solar Farms allow a group of people to subscribe to solar energy from a solar farm in Illinois. Kind of like crowdfunding a solar farm, or like a CSA, but instead of fresh vegetables from a local farm you’re getting clean solar energy.
The benefits of buying energy in a group is also a bulk discount — you save 10-25% off your energy bill!
The level of the savings depends on your utility and the solar farms in your area. Get matched to a solar farm in Illinois!
HOW MUCH CAN YOU SAVE?
Match to a Solar Farm
Without needing panels on your roof, community solar is an affordable solar option for nearly everyone — renters and homeowners, houses and apartments!
How much can you save on your energy by joining a solar farm in Illinois near where you live?
How Does Community Solar Work?
Pay nothing, save money, help the environment AND a local business? Really?
Instead of purchasing expensive solar panels and installing them on the roof of your house, community solar is more of a team-effort when it comes to producing solar power. Here’s the anatomy of a community solar project:
1. A solar farm site is built in a suitable location, with ready connection to the electricity grid
2. People from around the state contribute money for management and maintenance of the farm, typically via monthly subscription.
3. Large credits from power generated by the community solar project are sent back to the participants, ultimately reducing their electricity bills.
Because community solar doesn’t require participants to have a “solar-ready” property (with plenty of roof space, facing the right direction, and in enough direct sunlight), it’s accessible to more people.
Even Illinois residents who rent or live in apartments can enjoy clean, renewable solar energy.
Also, since the cost of installation and maintenance is split between the collective, nobody has to pay thousands of dollars up front to install solar panels. It’s a much more affordable option to traditional solar panel installation.
Support your Local Solar Farmers
Why buy dirty energy, often from the other side of the world, when we can capture clean energy — from Illinois right outside town?
Community Solar Farms in Illinois allow family farmers to lease some of their land for utilities and partners to set up small solar farms.
This supplements farm income and keeps energy local!
How to Access Community Solar Farms in Illinois
While most people might think the only option to harness the power of the sun to run their homes is to install costly panels on the roof, that’s not the case. There are more options to get solar now than ever before.
You could install residential solar panels in Illinois if you prefer to generate your own power, but you can also choose to purchase green energy from a standard utility, rent-to-own solar equipment, or participate in a community solar program.
Community solar farms are fortunately available all over the state of Illinois, from all the major utility companies.
Curious about the benefits of community solar and whether or not it’s right for you? Check out the frequently asked questions here. To see what you can save sign up to be matched with available Illinois community solar farms!