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Senator Stadelman Learns How Community Solar is Benefiting Rockford

Senator Steve Stadelman touring Rockford Solar (Photo by Nexamp)

Illinois Senator Steve Stadelman recently visited Rockford to tour a solar installation made possible by public investment in clean energy. Nexamp, the nation’s largest community solar company and operator of Rockford Solar, along with its development partner Trajectory Energy Partners, welcomed the senator to Rockford Solar, a community solar field.

Rockford Solar, developed by Trajectory Energy Partners and operated by Nexamp, is a community solar field providing equitable access to the clean energy economy. The 2 MW installation is providing clean energy to the local grid and annual energy savings to area residents, including over 500 low-income families. 

“It’s incredible to see the future in action, and that future is equitable access to clean energy to all members of our communities with sustainability in mind,” said Illinois Senator Steve Stadelman. “It is up to legislators like me, industry leaders like Nexamp and Trajectory Energy Partners, and communities like Rockford to ensure that solar is accessible to all as we work to build a clean energy future that benefits us all.”

Rockford Solar was developed as part of Illinois Solar for All, a program expanded by the landmark 2021 Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA) that helps make solar energy affordable and accessible to low-income communities. Programs such as Illinois Solar for All and Illinois Shines are part of Illinois’ ongoing efforts to build toward a clean energy future. 

"It is crucial for our leaders to see how important community solar is," said Mark Frigo, Vice President at Nexamp. "Rockford Solar provides energy to hundreds of families in the area, and this wouldn't be possible without the support of legislators who truly care about benefiting local communities."

Sen. Stadelman’s tour of Rockford Solar also comes after the selection of Illinois as a recipient of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Solar for All grant. Illinois will be receiving $156 million from the EPA through the Illinois Finance Authority to expand existing low-income community solar projects, such as Rockford Solar. With even more funding through the federal Inflation Reduction Act and other targets and investments from state-level legislation such as CEJA, renewable energy will expand further throughout Illinois, benefiting individuals and businesses statewide.

Rockford Solar was initially energized in 2021 after Trajectory Energy Partners collaborated with communities, organizations, individuals and the city to identify suitable land and apply for a Renewable Energy Credit award from the Illinois Solar for All program. Because of this, Rockford residents who meet specific income requirements can now save money on their utility bills.

“Community solar is an incredible solution for Illinois residents who cannot install their own solar panels,” said Carlo Cavallaro, Midwest Regional Director at the Coalition for Community Solar Access. “For example, renters are not able to install rooftop solar and some municipalities and Homeowner Associations have rules preventing the installation of rooftop solar. Community solar projects allow people to access the benefits of clean energy regardless of economic background or local regulations restricting solar installations.”

Thanks to community solar projects like Rockford Solar and leaders who support energy democracy, the clean energy economy is more accessible than ever for Illinois residents. The partnership between Nexamp and Trajectory Energy Partners is a shining example of how collaborations can create long-lasting impact on individuals, communities, and the future of our planet. 


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