A recent report by the Environmental Law and Policy Center (ELPC) shows that over 400 Illinois companies are now tapped into the state's clean energy supply chain for solar and wind projects.
The local solar industry supply chain includes 237 Illinois companies, including those providing installation, electrical and consulting services. The other 170 Illinois companies are working in the state's wind industry supply chain, comprised of manufacturers and diagnostic software designers as well as engineering, legal, financial and consulting firms. Collectively, the 400 plus Illinois wind and solar companies employ more than 20,000 workers, according to the report.
By comparison, there were 152 wind and 96 solar companies tied to the Illinois clean energy supply chain in 2011, according to a previous ELPC analysis.
"When a wind turbine goes up in rural Illinois, it doesn't sprout from the ground," said ELPC's Executive Director Howard Learner. "Every piece of that turbine and that wind machine ... (is) manufactured by skilled laborers and manufacturing workers" at firms located in Cicero, Elgin and Rockford, to name a few places.