Renewable Energy Resources Trust Fund (Illinois)

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Last modified on February 12, 2015.

Rules Regulations Policies Program

Place Illinois

Name Renewable Energy Resources Trust Fund
Incentive Type Public Benefits Fund
Applicable Sector Commercial, Industrial, Institutional, Residential, Utility
Eligible Technologies Biomass, Fuel Cells, Geothermal Electric, Hydroelectric, Photovoltaics, Solar Space Heat, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Thermal Process Heat, Solar Water Heat, Wind
Active Incentive Yes

Implementing Sector State/Territory
Energy Category Renewable Energy Incentive Programs

Charge String representation "$0.05 per month … port the RERTF)" is too long.

Total Fund Approximately $100 million for renewables (1998-2015)
Types Renewable energy

Date added to DSIRE 2000-01-01
Last DSIRE Review 2013-07-22
Last Substantive Modification
to Summary by DSIRE

References DSIRE[1]


Illinois's 1997 electric-industry restructuring legislation created separate public benefits funds that support renewable energy and residential energy efficiency. The Renewable Energy Resources Trust Fund (RERTF) supports renewables through grants, loans and other incentives administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO). The funding mechanism was established for 10 years in January 1998. In August 2007, funding was extended through December 12, 2015.*

Renewable-energy projects eligible for RERTF support include wind energy, solar-thermal energy, photovoltaics, dedicated crops grown for energy production and organic waste biomass, hydropower that does not involve new construction or significant expansion of hydropower dams, and "other such alternative sources of environmentally preferable energy." Energy from the incineration, burning or heating of waste wood, tires, garbage, general household, institutional and commercial waste, industrial lunchroom or office waste, landscape waste, or construction or demolition debris is not eligible. Public Act 97-0072 also permits DCEO to award grants for smart grid technology, effective July 1, 2011. Click here to view open renewable energy grant opportunities funded by the RERTF.

The RERTF is supported by a surcharge on customers' electric bills and gas bills known as the Renewable Energy Resource and Coal Technology Development Assistance Charge. Participation is required for investor-owned utilities, but voluntary for municipal utilities and electric cooperatives. Half of the money collected by the surcharges supports the RERTF, while the other half supports the Coal Technology Development Assistance Fund. The surcharge varies by customer class as follows:

  • $0.05 per month for residential electric service
  • $0.05 per month for residential gas service
  • $0.50 per month for nonresidential electric service with less than 10 megawatts (MW) of peak demand during the previous calendar year
  • $0.50 per month for nonresidential gas service with less than 4 million therms of gas during the previous calendar year
  • $37.50 per month for nonresidential electric service with at least 10 MW of peak demand during the previous calendar year
  • $37.50 per month for nonresidential gas service taking at least 4 million therms of gas during the previous calendar year

Approximately $100 million in revenue will be collected for the fund through December 2015. The RERTF receives approximately $5 million - $5.5 million per year to fund eligible projects. The 2012 Annual Report is available here.

Incentive Contact

Contact Name Wayne Hartel
Department Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity
Division Bureau of Energy and Recycling
Address 620 East Adams Street

Place Springfield, Illinois
Zip/Postal Code 62704
Phone (217) 785-3420
Phone 2 (217) 782-7500


Authorities (Please contact the if there are any file problems.)

Authority 1: 20 ILCS 687/6-1 et seq.
Date Effective 1997-12-16
Date Enacted 12/16/1997 (amended 2007)
Expiration Date 2015-12-12

Authority 2: § 220 ILCS 5/16-111.1
Date Effective 1999-06-30
Date Enacted 1999-06-30

  • Incentive and policy data are reviewed and approved by the N.C. Solar Center's DSIRE project staff.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1  "Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)"