DSCN6674 by Zak Helmick

Illinois students build Solar Decathalon house

Students from the University of Illinois, partnering with students from Peking University, entered a demonstration home in the Solar Decathlon China competition held in October. The program challenges students to design, build and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective, energy-efficient and ­attractive. The winner of the competition is the team that best blends affordability, consumer […]

Bipartisan support for inland waterways vital to Illinois economy

We hear a lot about the discord in Congress, but in October the House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Reform & Development Act with an overwhelming 417-3 vote. Earlier this year Senator Durbin and Senator Kirk both supported similar legislation. When we think of trans­portation infrastructure most of us think of roads that crisscross […]

Quinn proclaims Careers in Energy week in Illinois

Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed Careers in Energy week in Illinois, Oct. 14-20, 2013. As part of the Center for Energy Workforce Development’s (CEWD) nationwide effort to increase public ­awareness of the many careers in the energy field, the Illinois Energy Workforce Consortium worked to coordinate ­awareness ­activities with schools, ­colleges, universities, ­companies, and organizations across the […]

Illinois celebrates 150th Anniversary of Gettysburg Address

An ambitious series of events is set to mark the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address and help people across Illinois appreciate the famed speech’s impact on history. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (ALPLM) will ­present a copy of the address in a special evening display Nov. 18. An honor guard will watch […]

Air pollutants have dropped 67 percent

According to the EPA’s website between 1980 and 2012, gross ­domestic product increased 133 percent, vehicle miles traveled increased 92 percent, energy consumption increased 27 percent and U.S. ­population grew by 38 percent. During the same time period, total ­emissions of the six principal air pollutants dropped by 67 percent.

Illinois Veterans’ History Project

In November of 2005, the Illinois Veterans’ History Project was launched by Secretary of State Jesse White to create a permanent record of the names and stories of Illinois war veterans and civilians who served our state and country during war, so that their contributions would not be forgotten. The project was created after the […]

New broadband system will improve disaster response

Electric cooperatives are closely monitoring the development of a new first responder communications network. Imagine a public safety first responder able to communicate on a dedicated cellular-type nationwide network; ­accessing databases from the field, transferring data and images on demand without delay. During a disaster, com­munications is critical between agencies and other first ­responders like […]

U.S. wind energy production reaches record highs

The Energy Department released two new reports on August 6 showcasing record growth across the U.S. wind market. In 2012, wind energy became the number one source of new U.S. electricity generation capacity for the first time — representing 43 percent of all new electric additions and accounting for $25 billion in U.S. ­investment. According […]

USDA projects median farm will lose $2,300 in 2013

In its 2013 Farm Income Sector Forecast, the Department of Agriculture forecasts that while net farm income is expected to rise 6 percent to $120.6 billion, the median farm income will fall from a deficit of $1,435 in 2012 to a deficit of $2,300 for this year. The USDA said farm households “will make up […]


More senior co-op members using social media

Co-op members over the age of 65 are increasingly using social media, according to the new Touchstone Energy® 2012 National Survey on the Cooperative Difference. Over a three-year period, social media use in that demographic rose from 20 percent to 30 percent. Similarly, among members between 55 to 64, the rate of social media participation […]