North Hollywood, CA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/14/2019 --Illinois may be the next state to commit to a future 100% green energy mix. Illinois State Representative Will Davis recently introduced the "Path to 100 Act", legislation that would expand Illinois' renewable portfolio standard (RPS), driving new solar, wind and storage development and eliminating all non-renewable forms of energy within the next few decades. The act is sponsored by Sen. Bill Cunningham in the Illinois Senate.
Representative Davis said: "For the sake of our economy and our future, we need to get on the path to 100% clean, renewable electricity and we can start today. The Path to 100 Act will achieve one of Governor (J.B.) Pritzker's campaign goals while putting thousands of people to work, generating new investment in our state and new tax revenues for local communities."
Advocates of solar are thrilled to hear the news that the state of Illinois could be joining in the green energy movement. Marketing Director at Green Solar Technologies and renewable energy advocate, Jorge Ricalday states, "It's exciting to hear that Illinois is following suit with both my home state of California and with Hawaii. The Path to 100 Act will bring us one step closer to a green nation."
The Path to 100 Act builds on the efforts of the Future Energy Jobs Act (FEJA), a plan which went into effect on June 1st, 2017 to expand clean energy programs, thereby creating jobs and reducing consumer costs. FEJA mandated that Illinois should produce 16 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, but it's projected to fall far short of that goal.
Amy Heart, Midwest chair for the Solar Energy Industries Association said, "While we are increasing wind and solar in Illinois significantly today, with the existing policies that we have, we actually only reach about 7 percent of renewable energy generation by 2020."
The Path to 100 Act includes the following goals:
- Expand Illinois' RPS current requirement of 25% renewable energy by 2025 to 40% renewables by 2030.
- Ensure that there are adequate funds to fully implement the RPS.
- Procure an estimated 6 GW of new utility-scale solar, 7.5 GW of new residential, commercial and community solar and 6.5 GW of new wind power.
- Identify opportunities to couple energy storage with renewable energy development and institute a statewide study to eliminate barriers for energy storage.
Representative Davis says of the Act, "The renewable energy industry is ready to invest billions of dollars in our state and deliver the clean, homegrown energy our citizens want. I intend for this Act to benefit our state equitably and spread the economic development dollars to Illinois communities throughout the state and especially those that are most in need of jobs and economic growth. I look forward to working with environmental justice, community and labor leaders to make sure the benefits of clean energy growth reach across Illinois."