DOE Announces $450 Million For Clean Energy On Mine Lands

As part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced up to $450 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to advance clean energy demonstration projects on current and former mine lands. Deploying clean energy projects in mining communities across the nation is key to strengthening rural economies, creating […]

In Illinois, a Model for a Just Transition From Coal to Solar

The passage of the Biden administration’s landmark climate bill in August marks the beginning of a new national effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But some states are taking steps toward even more ambitious climate goals. In Illinois, that’s playing out through the Climate and Equitable Jobs act (CEJA), a comprehensive green energy bill that […]

Spurring Clean Energy Development on Reclaimed Mine Lands

Across the country, there are an estimated half a million abandoned mines that once produced coal, ores, and minerals but now pose significant risks to human health and the environment. Left unremediated, abandoned mines can leak heavy metals and toxic chemicals into local ecosystems. Additionally, abandoned coal mines emit methane—a greenhouse gas 80 times more […]

In a Twist, Old Coal Plants Help Deliver Renewable Power. Here’s How.

The sites, once a source of greenhouse gases, have a useful feature: They’re wired to the electricity grid. For new ventures like solar farms, that can save a lot of time and money. Across the country, aging and defunct coal-burning power plants are getting new lives as solar, battery and other renewable energy projects, partly […]

Solar, storage to come to Illinois coal communities

Solar panels and energy storage will be paired on the sites of six retired coal plants in downstate Illinois under a provision of last fall’s sweeping state energy law.   The sites for the installations were recently announced, along with five other former coal plants that will host standalone energy storage projects. Vistra, which owns the […]

Solar, storage projects set to bring jobs, tax revenue to Illinois coal communities

NRG's Joliet Generating Station outside Chicago. Credit: Kari Lydersen

A recent state procurement formalizes plans to put solar and storage on the site of several retired coal plants. The owners will receive grants and higher-value renewable energy credits to finance the projects. Solar panels and energy storage will be paired on the sites of six retired coal plants in downstate Illinois under a provision […]

Illinois ‘Coal to Solar’ transition scheme awards grants for 255MW of battery storage

Power generation companies that have committed to building battery energy storage facilities at former coal power plant sites in the US state of Illinois will get US$280.5 million in grants. The Senate of Illinois passed the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, committing the state to reaching 50% renewable energy by 2040 and 100% carbon-free electricity […]

Solar support in coal country

Aerial view of mountain top coal mining in West Virginia. © Kent Mason

In the United States, passage of the Build Back Better Act would extend the solar Investment Tax Credit and offer other clean energy initiatives that would boost the renewable energy momentum already underway in Senator Joe Manchin’s home state of West Virginia. This is good news for the state and is resulting in unlikely allies.