Illinois’s largest utility, state regulators, environmental and consumer advocates recently rallied together in Chicago in support of an inconspicuous but powerful gadget: the smart thermostat.
As smart meter usage expands, so do questions about the ways utilities and other companies can harness energy data to advance grid technology.
The global energy system is evolving, but not fast enough to meet decarbonization goals aimed at curbing the worst impacts of climate change, according to an International Energy Agency report released in Chicago last week.
The North American power grid is reliable and resilient despite the growth of variable, renewable energy sources as well as an increasing risk of both cybersecurity and physical threats, according to a new analysis.
A team of researchers at a unique facility in downstate Illinois is working to answer questions around maintaining trust in the power grid, particularly when faced with cybersecurity threats.
State and federal regulators call many of the shots in the utility world, and some advocates say they should use that power to press for faster modernization of the electrical grid.
Tucked away behind a research park at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign is a glimpse into what many industry analysts say is the future of the power industry.
Venture capital invested in clean tech is shrinking, and the capital that is being spent is concentrated on the East and West coasts, not the Midwest, according to a recent study by the Brookings Institution.
The central mission of Over The Rainbow (OTR), a nonprofit that provides housing across northern Illinois for adults with physical disabilities, has nothing to do with producing cleaner, more efficient energy. And yet, if all goes according to plan, its Hill Arboretum Apartments in Evanston, Illinois will be home to an innovative foray into community solar. Last month, Cook County officials selected OTR’s Hill Arboretum as one of 15 pilot sites for a program aimed at tackling a problem that has long vexed solar deployment: How do you get photovoltaic panels to people who don’t own their own roof or whose roof isn’t conducive to harnessing the power of the sun? The Cook County Solar Market Pathways project originally launched in 2015 with $1.2 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy. The immediate goal is to develop case studies and engineering assessments for each pilot site, with the hope that the lessons learned can facilitate access to solar power in the next five years for at least 30,000 Cook County residents who would not otherwise have access to the technology.
In some cases, rural America is seeing the smart grid arrive at their doorstep well before their urban and suburban counterparts.