The State of Illinois ranks 6th nationwide in wind turbines. The state currently has 2,778 turbines in operation, according to the American Wind Energy Association. There will be more coming very soon, including the Lincoln Land Wind Project in Morgan County and four more farms in McLean County.
According to a report by the Associated Press, Illinois could make enough wind energy by 2030 to power the equivalent of 7.2 million average U.S. homes, according to the federal Department of Energy’s Wind Vision Scenario. By last year, turbines spun 6.8% of Illinois’ generated electricity, according to the Bloomington Pantagraph. Illinois’ first wind farm opened in Mendota in 2003.
McLean, Lee and Livingston counties have the most turbines in the state. A federal tax credit on wind farms was expected to expire at the end of 2020. U.S. wind project developers who wanted to receive the full 2016 value of the credit had to begin operations by the end of the year. However, President Donald Trump signed the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020 on December 17th extending the credits to the end of 2020. According to reported dates for wind projects in the U.S. coming online in 2019, 5.7 GW, or 44.7% of the annual total of electric energy were completed this year.