Solar and Wind Energy Incentives Announced for Illinois

November 14, 2009

Residential green building enthusiasts and LEED for Illinois Homes projects can rejoice as the state of Illinois has re-established their solar rebate program after a 1 year plus hiatus.

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announced yesterday the opening of the Solar & Wind Energy Rebate Program.  The rebates can total 30% for residential and business applicants, and 50% for public sector and non-profit entities with a maximum of $50,000.  Applications will be due April 30, 2010.  For more information, go to the IL DCEO website.

This is great news for those building green homes that are considering renewable energy systems. For instance, while a renewable energy system isn’t required for a LEED home, it can help lower the home’s HERS rating, which in turn translates to more points in the final LEED for Homes rating.

With the 30% state rebate, in addition to the 30% federal income tax credit, these incentives substantially reduce the  initial cost for solar energy sytems. For instance, a solar thermal system in Illinois can receive a payback period of around 7 or 8 years if installed a super energy-efficient LEED home!

Learn more about solar energy in Illinois by visiting the Illinois Solar Energy Assocation or by taking an introductory online course.

About The Author

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Jason La Fleur is the Chair of the USGBC Illinois chapter's Residential Green Building Committee, and is a Project Manager for the Alliance for Environmental Sustainability. He is a member of the national US Green Building Council (USGBC) Education Committee, and assisted with creating the education standards for LEED AP continuing education. Jason is also the chair of the Education Committee for the Illinois Solar Energy Association, and an instructor for the organization. For six years, he developed courses for real estate appraisers and led the Appraisal Institute's Green Building Project Team, working with sustainability-minded real estate professionals. Additionally, he is actively involved in residential green building and the LEED for Homes program in the Chicago region. Jason holds a Master’s in Education from the University of Illinois, and has over ten years of project management and curriculum development experience. Further dedication to sustainability is demonstrated in his LEED Accredited Professional designation.

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