Power Pulse!
A quarterly newsletter featuring the latest news and information
from the Illinois Power Agency.
Our vision is to provide a clean, reliable, equitable, and cost-effective
energy future for residents and businesses across Illinois.
January 25, 2022
Public Act 102-0662 Implementation Activities 
With the enactment of Public Act 102-0662 (also known as the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act or CEJA) on September 15, 2021, the IPA is playing a pivotal role in implementing the new provisions of the law that will put Illinois on a path to a 100% carbon-free clean energy future.

As the Agency implements new statutory requirements and changes stemming from P.A. 102-0662, it is keeping stakeholders and interested parties apprised of the latest developments and activities undertaken to support the development of the new renewable energy generation required to meet P.A. 102-0662’s ambitious goals.

Below is a snapshot of key activities that have been undertaken to date:

2022 Revised Long-Term Plan

On January 13, 2022, the IPA released its draft 2022 Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (“2022 Long-Term Plan” or “Plan”) for public review and comment. The Agency was required to develop and publish the draft Plan within 120 days of the effective date of Public Act 102-0662.

The draft 2022 Long-Term Plan reflects changes to the Renewable Portfolio Standard (“RPS”) and new statutory requirements stemming from the P.A. 102-0662. The Plan describes proposed program and procurement activity the Agency plans to conduct to meet P.A. 102-0662’s more aggressive RPS requirements, including a new requirement that 40% of energy delivered by Illinois electric utilities be met through renewable energy by 2030. The Plan also describes proposed Agency efforts for meeting new diversity, equity, and inclusion requirements; applying new labor requirements applicable to projects supported by its programs and procurements; developing robust new consumer protection requirements; and developing new programs, including a self-direct RPS compliance program for large customers. 

The Agency welcomes public comments on the draft Plan. Written comments are due on Monday, February 28, 2022.

The Agency will also hold virtual public hearings for the 2022 Long-Term Plan on Friday, February 18, 2022. For more information on how to participate in the virtual hearings, and how to submit written comments, see the 2022 Long-Term Plan’s Cover Letter and Hearing Notice.

Adjustable Block Program

Within 90 days of P.A. 102-0662’s enactment, the IPA was required to reopen the Adjustable Block Program (also known as Illinois Shines) for new project applications. The Program, which supports the development of new distributed generation and community solar projects across Illinois, has supported the development of over 20,000 new solar projects in Illinois to date. On December 14, 2021, the IPA announced the reopening of the Program, and the Program is currently accepting new project applications. 

For more information on the Adjustable Block Program, please visit the Program websites: illinoisabp.com (for the solar industry) or illinoisshines.com (for the general public).  

Carbon Mitigation Credit Procurement Plan

The IPA was required to develop and implement a Carbon Mitigation Credit (“CMC”) Procurement Plan for the procurement of Carbon Mitigation Credits to support at-risk nuclear energy facilities. In receiving a CMC delivery contract providing revenue certainty to an at-risk nuclear facility, that nuclear plant commits to stay in operation for the contract term, thus avoiding the potential loss of carbon-free generation.  

The IPA released its CMC Plan for public comment on September 17, 2021 and filed the CMC Plan with the ICC on September 29, 2021. That Plan was approved on November 10, 2021, and the resulting procurement was held on November 23, 2021 with the results approved by the ICC on December 1, 2021. The selected recipients of CMC delivery contracts were Braidwood 1 and 2, Byron 1 and 2, and Dresden 2 and 3.

For more information on the procurement event for Carbon Mitigation Credits, visit the IPA procurement website.

Indexed Wind, Solar, and Brownfield

Within 240 days of P.A. 102-0662’s effective date, the IPA is required to conduct a procurement event to support the development of new utility-scale wind projects, new utility-scale solar projects, and new brownfield site photovoltaic projects.

To date, the Agency’s Procurement Administrator has released a draft contract and procurement rules and will be holding a stakeholder workshop on Monday, February 7. To learn more about the Agency’s Indexed Wind, Solar, and Brownfield Procurement, visit the IPA procurement website.

Coal to Solar and Storage

The IPA is also required to conduct two REC procurements supporting the development of new utility-scale solar projects coupled with storage located at coal plant sites. The first procurement event for this “coal to solar” initiative will be conducted by May 1, 2022 and the second procurement event will be conducted between September 30, 2022 and October 31, 2022.

The Agency’s Procurement Administrator released a timeline of key dates for the first Coal to Solar procurement event on the calendar page of the procurement website. The timeline for the second procurement event will be forthcoming.

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder engagement is of utmost priority to the IPA. Below are select stakeholder engagements that the IPA has conducted to communicate key activities and changes stemming from P.A. 102-0662.

  • The IPA launched the CEJA Implementation Page on October 19, 2021, a dedicated resource page serving as an up-to-date hub of information for P.A. 102-0662 items being implemented by the Agency.

  •  The IPA issued requests for stakeholder feedback on a number of topics related to the development of the 2022 Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan on November 12, 2021. These requests focused on new elements of the Plan that implement provisions of P.A. 102-0662. Furthermore, to help facilitate stakeholder feedback requests for the 2022 Long-Term Plan development, the IPA hosted two virtual workshops on November 18, 2021.

  • The IPA hosted two virtual stakeholder webinars on October 21, 2021 to solicit feedback from stakeholders related to the Adjustable Block Program reopening. The webinars covered topics related to the new Program requirements stemming from P.A. 102-0662. In addition, the IPA hosted a stakeholder webinar on December 13, 2021 to highlight changes to the Illinois Shines Program and the updated Program Guidebook.

  • The IPA implemented its Power Hour Webinar series, a newly launched series of educational and informative presentations on a wide range of clean energy topics and emerging issues. In 2021, the IPA hosted seven Power Hour Webinars on IPA topical areas impacted by P.A. 102-0662.
Did You Know?
Did you know utility-scale renewable energy projects must be a minimum of
5 megawatts in size but are often hundreds of megawatts of energy generating capacity, covering potentially hundreds of acres, such as a large-scale wind farm?
IPA Employee Spotlights
Sharon A. Johnson
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Manager,
Illinois Power Agency

Sharon joined the IPA as the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (“DEI”) Manager on November 1, 2021. In this role, Sharon oversees the implementation of new diversity requirements and opportunities for the IPA’s renewable energy procurements and programs while also helping the Agency improve its internal commitments and goals of diversity, equity, and inclusion. As the DEI Manager, Sharon also oversees Minority/Women‐Owned Business Enterprise participation and Business Enterprise Program compliance for IPA contractors and consultants.

There has never been a more relevant time to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives that benefit people regardless of race, color, gender, or myriad other forms of self-expression and individuality. With the passage of the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act, there is a new focus for the Agency to build a diverse and equitable clean energy future for all. I am excited to join the IPA at a time when we can work together to drive efforts and build programs that support an equitable clean energy economy in Illinois.
-Sharon A. Johnson

Prior to joining the IPA, Sharon served as the Acting Deputy City Manager for the city of Evanston, Illinois, providing oversight to Minority/Women/Evanston-based enterprises as well as the city’s Local Employment Program. In this role, Sharon led operations of primary contractor data compliance and monitored program effectiveness of long-term, large-scale capital improvement projects. In addition, Sharon served as Co-Chair of Evanston’s Racial Equity Diversity & Inclusion initiative in collaboration with the University of Illinois.

Outside of work, Sharon enjoys traveling and volunteering with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Women’s Association-Youth Music Appreciation Program.

Audrey Steinbach
Program Manager, Adjustable Block Program

Audrey joined the IPA as the Program Manager of the Adjustable Block Program (“ABP”) in December 2018, right before the Program’s official launch in January 2019. In this role, Audrey serves as the primary liaison between the Agency and the Program Administrator. As the Program Manager, she serves as the subject matter expert on ABP guidelines and requirements.

It’s an honor each day to be able to work on a program that actively works to move us away from fossil fuels and into renewable and clean sources of energy.
-Audrey Steinbach

Prior to joining the IPA, Audrey worked at Northwestern University on various sustainability efforts, including managing the campus-wide electric vehicle infrastructure upgrade project, resulting in upgraded electric vehicle charging stations and doubled charging capacity. One of her biggest accomplishments at Northwestern was working as a part of the sustainability team that created Northwestern’s Strategic Sustainability Plan, a resource that supports and guides the University's sustainability goals and programs. Earlier in her career, Audrey worked for the Illinois Sierra Club supporting clean energy campaigns and initiatives.

When she is not at work, Audrey enjoys swimming in Lake Michigan. She also enjoys cooking and baking. Her goal for this year is to master the croissant.
Register for Upcoming 2022 Power Hour Webinars

IPA Power Hour 1: Renewable Energy Credits-What Are They and How Are They Used to Meet RPS Compliance?
Date: Friday, February 25, 2022
Time: 12 p.m. -1p.m. CDT

IPA Power Hour 2: What Does Consumer Protection Look Like in the Evolving Solar Market in Illinois?
Date: Friday, March 18, 2022
Time: 12 p.m.-1 p.m. CDT

IPA Power Hour 3: Net Metering Updates and Implications for Distributed Generation
in Illinois
Date: Friday, April 29, 2022
Time: 12p.m.-1 p.m. CDT

A calendar of future 2022 Power Hour Webinars with registration links are forthcoming.
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Chicago, Illinois 60602
The IPA is committed to the planning and procurement of reliable, efficient, and cost-effective electricity for residents and businesses in an ethical and objective manner, insulated from improper influence. The IPA also administers incentive programs and procurements to promote
renewable and zero-carbon energy generation, while building an equitable
clean energy future for all Illinoisans.