The ELPC Blog

It’s a sunny day for Illinois: Solar energy across the state

Did you know that Illinois has one of the fastest-growing solar industries in the country? Our state added 1,308 jobs last year, up 37% from the prior year, and there’s more to come! ELPC is helping pave the way for solar energy, working with community organizations, industry experts, and policy makers to launch Illinois into

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Fighting Bad Ozone in the Midwest

Summer in Chicago is the season of outdoor music festivals, fireworks at Navy Pier, and an invisible menace looming in the air—ozone. While stratospheric ozone (the “ozone layer”) protects Earth from UV rays, ground level ozone is a dangerous air pollutant that harms humans and vegetation. Unfortunately, EPA hasn’t been doing its job to protect

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Pragmatic Environmental Advocacy in Springfield

On Monday July 29, 2019, ELPC hosted Illinois state Representative Ann Williams, Senator Bill Cunningham, and Senator Melinda Bush for a panel discussion on the recent legislative session in Springfield. This year was particularly productive for the state legislature, and especially on the environment. Members passed bipartisan legislation to protect clean water, support energy efficiency,

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Electric school buses hit the road in the Midwest

In nearly every community across the Midwest you can find a yellow school bus. It’s a classic feature of American life, so common it’s easy to forget. But the diesel engine inside your average bus is not so sunny as its exterior, producing air pollution and carbon emissions that pose grave risks to our children.

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ELPC joins discussions with national leaders on protecting clean water in the Great Lakes region

Hearing on Vanishing Environmental Reviews and the SBA’s Disaster Loan Program Last Friday, I testified at the U.S. House Committee on Small Business about Wisconsin’s proposed Foxconn development near Lake Michigan and the need for environmental regulation. Thank you Congressman Brad Schneider and Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez for holding this hearing. Developments like Foxconn usually receive an environmental impact assessment before they

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ELPC Gives Great Lakes Climate Change Strategy Briefing on Capitol Hill

From L-R: Senator Ed Markey, Professor Don Wuebbles, Senator Tammy Duckworth, ELPC Executive Director Howard Learner, Professor Dana Infante, Professor Ashish Sharma  On July 9 I joined ELPC’s Federal Legislative Director Ann Mesnikoff, and three prominent Midwest university scientists – Professors Dana Infante (Michigan State U), Ashish Sharma (Notre Dame and U-Illinois) and Don Wuebbles  (U-Illinois)

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Stopping Rt 53 Boondoggle in Lake County Illinois

ELPC and our allies won a major victory last week. The Lake County, Illinois board decided to stop pursuing a massive highway extension that would have been a boondoggle for developers, destroyed sensitive wetlands, and contributed to air pollution. Lake County’s Route 53 has resurfaced several times over the years, and each time local communities

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Rural Electric Co-Ops Bring Solar Energy, Butterflies, and Resilience to the Midwest

Rural electric cooperatives supply power to 1 in 8 Americans, providing expansive rural areas with important connections to the energy grid. In recent years, many co-ops have increasingly adopted solar power. Not only is this renewable energy good for the environment, but it’s good for rural communities who get clean local energy at affordable prices.

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Want lower energy bills? Efficiency is the best bet for Ohio

Green energy is booming across the Midwest, but in Ohio the legislature is close to passing a bill that would take an unprecedented step backwards. HB6 would subsidize nuclear and coal power plants, while simultaneously cutting state support for renewable energy and energy efficiency. The irony is that they claim this bill will save customers

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Air Quality Monitoring Kicks off for Summer 2019

This month, our ELPC air monitoring team and community partners hit the pavement in our third summer of data collection. Our monitoring program, Air Quality Chicago, trains residents to collect air pollution data using AirBeam PM2.5 monitors. This enables them to gain a better understanding of their exposure to air pollution and make better-informed decisions

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ELPC’s Founding Vision is Becoming Today’s Sustainability Reality

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