An Energy Revolution in Illinois is Underway!
Perry County Solar Array Will Double the State’s Solar Capacity
Did you know that the largest solar array in Illinois is planned for Perry County, north of Carbondale in the southern Part of the state? Or that this 99 MW array constructed by New York-based Ranger Power, a utility-scale solar development company, will more than double the state’s solar capacity? According to Adam Cohen, CEO of Ranger Power, declining prices of utility-scale solar, coupled with Illinois’ commitment to creating in-state energy jobs, enabled Ranger Power to participate in the most cost-competitive solar power purchase agreement in Illinois history
The project ,known as Prairie State Solar Project, is expected to expected to come on line by 2021 and, once complete, will generate enough energy to power nearly 15,000 homes. Wabash Valley Power, a not-for-profit generation and transmission cooperative, will be the sole purchaser of power from this array for the next 30 years.
It has been estimated that the project will bring nearly $100 million of new investment to southwestern Illinois and will also contribute millions in tax revenue. The project also will create an estimated 200 jobs during the construction phase, and three to five full-time positions once the site is operational.
“We’re excited to be one step closer to moving forward with this meaningful investment in our country, which will support new jobs and new revenues for our community to invest in schools, roads and bridges,” State Rep. Terri Bryant, R-Murphysboro, said in a news release.
The project supports the objectives of Illinois’ Future Energy Jobs Act, which went into effect last June, and requires at least 4,300 megawatts of new solar and wind energy to be built in the state by 2030. It also sets aside funding that can be used by economically-disadvantaged communities for access to solar, jobs training, and jobs as part of the Illinois Solar for All program. Read more about the Future Energy Jobs Act and how it can create new energy jobs in Illinois.