Illinois approves road map to 100% clean energy

By Jeffrey Tomich | 06/05/2024 07:09 AM EDT

Regulators estimate the state will need to at least triple its renewable energy production to ensure a carbon-free grid.

Solar panels generate electricity at a facility in Chicago.

Solar panels generate electricity at a facility in Chicago. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Illinois regulators have approved the state’s first road map to achieving carbon-free power by 2050.

The Illinois Commerce Commission unanimously approved the Renewable Energy Access Plan last week. The report identifies pathways and barriers to carrying out the climate goals of the 2021 Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, which requires the state to phase out fossil fuels.

The plan is “an important resource for regulators, policymakers, [regional transmission organizations] and other stakeholders as Illinois’ energy transition continues to evolve, all while keeping affordability top of mind and ensuring our grid remains resilient and reliable,” ICC Chair Doug Scott said in a statement.


Illinois is one of nearly two dozen states with a 100 percent carbon-free energy goal, according to the Clean Energy States Alliance. But the state has so far lagged in meeting its interim renewable energy standards. To achieve the 2050 target, it must significantly accelerate the rate at which it adds new wind and solar generation to the grid.