Illinois has 3,568 MW of wind installed, an amount which has not increased since 2012. However, there are over 500 MW of new wind projects planned. A notable development that will go online later in 2015 is the Kankakee Wind Farm, a 175 MW project which will supply Microsoft with electricity.
Illinois has several geographic advantages for wind. It has a strong wind resource located near urban centers and can take advantage of exporting energy to eastern markets through PJM. However, wind also faces competition from a powerful nuclear sector.
The state has an ambitious RPS of 25% renewables by 2025. Nevertheless, there are financial complexities in the utility market in Illinois that have caused the state to be at high risk to not meet this standard. An unintended consequence of the deregulation of electric utilities in Illinois rendered the current RPS “toothless.” Therefore, fixing the RPS continues to be a top priority for the wind industry.