The Illinois Renewable Energy Conference on July 21 at Illinois State University will feature presentations on state energy policies and current legislative proposals.

“Illinois legislative proposals for energy policy have different implications for the growth of renewable energy and energy efficiency in the state,” said David Loomis, director of the Center for Renewable Energy, Energy Learning Exchange, and Institute for Regulatory Policy Studies at Illinois State University.

Plenary sessions will discuss the status and future of renewable energy in the state, and breakout session tracks will focus on policy, technology, and case studies specifically for wind, solar, biomass, geothermal, and energy efficiency. The event will be of interest to renewable energy companies, policy makers, government officials, county board members, zoning board members, universities, community colleges, schools, landowners, agriculture extension offices, lawyers, electric coops, manufacturers, contractors, environmental groups, and general public.

The regular registration rate is $80, and the late registration rate of $100 begins July 1. For conference information and to register online, please visit Conference schedule, topics, and speakers are subject to change.

Plenary session speakers scheduled to provide updates on renewable energy in the state include Marion “Molly” Lunn, deputy director, Office of Energy and Recycling, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity; Anthony Star, director, Illinois Power Agency; Jack Darin, director, Sierra Club, Illinois Chapter; and a special panel session will discuss “Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency at Educational Institutions in Illinois” with James Hubbard, executive director, facilities division, Heartland Community College; Dr. John Asplund, superintendent, Farmington Central School District 265; and Naomi Hershiser, dean of environmental programs, Prairie Crossing Charter School. The welcome will be presented by Dr. Larry Dietz, president of Illinois State University.

Breakout session speakers scheduled include Lisa Albrecht, Solar Service, Inc.; Nick Dreher, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance; Ethan Elser, PACE Equity; Mike Erickson, Community Green Energy; John Freitag, Geothermal Alliance of Illinois; Shannon Fulton, Straight Up Solar; Harry Ohde, IBEW 134; Gail Parson, Environmental Entrepreneurs; Matt Slager, Hanson Professional Services; and Justin Stuva, Corn Belt Energy.

Event partners include the Center for Renewable Energy at Illinois State University, Illinois Wind Working Group, Wind on the Wires, Illinois Solar Energy Association, Illinois Biomass Working Group, Geothermal Alliance of Illinois and Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance. The networking session the evening before the conference is sponsored by Geronimo Energy. Exhibiting sponsors include Avangrid Renewables, EDP Renewables, Farnsworth Group, Husch Blackwell, Iberdrola Renewables, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University, and Illinois Laborers’ Employers Cooperation and Education Trust.

The Center for Renewable Energy at Illinois State University was approved by the Illinois Board of Higher Education in August 2008. The Center has three major functional areas: supporting the renewable energy major at Illinois State University; serving the Illinois renewable energy community by providing information to the public; and encouraging applied research on renewable energy at Illinois State University and through collaborations with other universities.