What’s the payout from Illinois new energy law?

People are hoping the benefits of the newly-passed energy bill will outweigh the cost for Illinois' electricity consumers.

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang The massive energy bill that passed in the last minutes of Illinois lawmakers’ fall schedule last week has critics fuming about its bailout of Exelon’s two money-losing nuclear plants. But supporters reply that the time for criticism has passed and it’s time rather to maximize the benefits to the public. The Future Energy […]

Southwest Side business cooperative puts waste to good use

The Plant’s outdoor farm embraces the sunlight on the Southwest Side of Chicago.

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang Before you trash the remnants of that Thanksgiving turkey or ram the last bits of stuffing into the garbage disposal, try thinking about how much food is wasted in the U.S. every day. The U.S. throws away 30 percent of edible food annually, an equivalent of $161 billion worth of produce, […]

What is solar energy’s future under Trump?

Experts talked at the Solar Power PV Conference in Chicago a day after the election.

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang A few hours after Donald Trump delivered his victory speech, hundreds of solar industry practitioners, environmentalists and policy experts gathered in Chicago to consider what lies ahead under the president-elect. “Clearly, there is an elephant in the room,” said Tom Kimbis, the interim president at the Washington-based Solar Energy Industries Association, […]

Despite appeals, many black voters still lukewarm on Clinton

By Nia Prater and Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang A group of 10 to 12 people gathered on the third floor of the San Lucas United Church of Christ Sunday afternoon, not for worship, but for political action.  After making selections from a buffet table full of coffee, donuts and mandarin oranges, they assembled to discuss strategy. […]

Energy efficiency efforts in Chicago set to expand

LUCHA's home buyer workshop

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang Ramiro Amirez, 32, went to a workshop recently with his wife Olivia and their fourth baby. They are hoping to buy a new home within their budget. Although seeking a place with a decent price is important, saving money as much as they can is also crucial. That’s why energy efficiency […]

Asian Americans seek voice and political power

Asian American early voting ballot receipt

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang and Jingzhe Kelly Wang It was a Wednesday night, five days before early voting started in Illinois and Paula Camaya, a freshman at Loyola University, joined more than 20 others at Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago in Uptown to call people in the community to make their votes count. “We have been […]

Chicago’s solar opportunities grow

The restaurant Uncommon Ground has five solar thermal panels that provide 10 percent of its overall energy needs.

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang Listening to people talk about the beauty of having solar as their energy source, you might have your doubts. When do you earn back your initial investment, how do you pay for the high upfront cost and what if you don’t have a house? Challenges remain,  but things  have changed If […]

Illinois’ energy policy challenged

Solar panels between two buildings in downtown Chicago

By Yu-Ning Aileen Chuang Donald Trump may describe the nation’s energy policy as a “disaster,” but not everyone in Illinois would agree. With the most nuclear power plants in the nation, and as one of the top five coal-produced states, Illinois is pressing ahead as well for clean energy jobs and industries. The state’s clean […]