Speeding the Energy Transition

Illinois Solar Program Update with Anthony Star, Former Director of the Illinois Power Agency EP 112

Our guest today is Anthony Star, the former Director of the Illinois Power Agency (IPA). The IPA is the authority that oversees renewable energy implementation in Illinois. It was established in 2007 by Public Act 95-0481. In 2017, they established the Illinois Solar program as mandated by the Future Energy Jobs Act (FEJA). The Illinois solar program has risen from 80 MW in 2017 to over 1.5 GW of solar installations in 2021.

In Sept 2021, the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA) became the law of the land and greatly enhanced our Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) and the solar programs. CEJA is tasked to establish rebate and grant programs for electric vehicles and charging stations and oversee the phase-out of fossil fuel-fired electrical generation units in Illinois. They aim to get Illinois to 100% renewable energy and achieve 46% renewable energy by 2030, including over 17,000 MW of new solar energy and 6,300 MW of new wind energy.

Anthony Star was appointed as the Director of the Illinois Power Agency in 2013. In his role there, he oversaw the procurement of electricity for Illinois default service customers and the implementation of the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. Previously he worked as a Policy Advisor to two Chairmen of the Illinois Commerce Commission and worked for a Chicago-area non-profit on energy and sustainability.

On this episode of the Clean Power Hour, Anthony joins Tim Montague to discuss the updates made to the Illinois Solar Program and what the future for Illinois Solar looks like and more.

Key Takeaways
1. The role of Illinois Power Agency
2. Anthony's role at the IPA
3. The updates made to the Illinois Solar Program in 2021
4. The strides made by the Illinois Solar Program from its inception
5. How the program is funded
6. Institutions and Individuals that Illinois Solar Program update targets and why they are essential to the Illinois economy.
7. The difference between traditional community solar and the new community-driven community solar
8. The goals for the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act(CEJA)