Secondary Feature

Federal and state representatives were on hand for the ribbon cutting at Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative’s Scott County Solar Plant on March 7. From left to right are: State Sen. Sam McCann; Mary Warren, USDA; Robert Brown, IL Rural Board President; U.S. Senator Dick Durbin; Ellen McCurdy, IL DCEO; and State Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer.

IL Rural Electric Cooperative holds ribbon-cutting for Scott County Solar Plant

Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative on March 8 held a ribbon cutting for its new 500 kilowatt solar facility. The facility is located south of Winchester, Ill. on Illinois Highway 106, next to one of the substations that serves the west central Illinois cooperative’s 7,800 members. The new solar plant, covering about four acres, consists of 2,223 solar panels, all of ...Read More


Future rate shock

In his State of the Union speech President Obama said his “all-of-the-above energy strategy” has moved America closer to energy independence, but co-op ­leaders noticed he didn’t mention coal. And although coal is America’s most abundant and affordable energy resource, the EPA’s proposed regulation will virtually eliminate new coal-fired plants changing the policy to an all-but-one energy strategy. Commenting on ...Read More

View of an efficient and well-lighted house for security and entertaining Source: Hadco

Efficient outdoor lighting

By James Dulley Dear Jim: I need to add outdoor lighting for security at my home. I’d also like to use the lights for entertaining. How can I brighten outdoor spaces without ­driving up my electric bills? - Paul H. Dear Paul: Outdoor lighting can be effective for security, but drives up utility bills if done improperly. Security lights are ...Read More


Listen to your heart

Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women – killing more than all forms of cancer combined. The American Heart Association (AHA) encourages all women to live a healthy lifestyle and spread the message that heart disease is killing our mothers, daughters, sisters and friends.  Go Red For Women Coleen Mays, Rural Electric Convenience Cooperative member and Springfield resident, ...Read More


Casey’s General Store

In rural communities across the Midwest, you are likely to spot a Casey’s General Store, sometimes even more than one in the same community. Illinois is Casey’s second largest state, only behind Iowa, where you’ll find the corporate offices of the convenience store chain. Second is still impressive considering there are 1,770 stores in 14 states and Illinois has 410 ...Read More

Judging Table

Finest Cooking Holiday Recipe Contest Winners

Christmas offers much to celebrate - the opportunity to gather with family and enjoy the familiar sights, sounds and smells we have come to cherish. One of the things we most associate with the holidays is food. It seems like everyone has a favorite dish they want to see on the table. Back in August, we challenged our electric cooperative ...Read More

IMW 7 and RECC turbine

Illinois innovation

Many times innovation comes out of a backyard garage, not a big company. That’s the story of “Seven,” an electric 207 MPGe dream car that was born in an Illinois co-op member’s pole barn. Much has happened in the three years since Illinois Country Living last interviewed Illuminati Motor Works (IMW), the team that built an electric car from scratch ...Read More


World-class performer

Last month POWER Magazine named Prairie State Energy Campus as one of the top five coal-fired plants in the world. This 1,600-MW mine-mouth plant located in Washington County, Ill., is the largest U.S. coal-fired plant to be built in three decades. The supercritical plant’s state-of-the-art emissions controls result in emissions that are one-fifth the national average for coal-fueled plants. The ...Read More

Professional home energy auditors use infrared cameras to picture energy leaks.

Extreme Efficiency Makeover

By Magen Howard Extreme home makeovers can update your living space, but an energy efficiency makeover will ensure your home performs at its peak. Everything from “low-hanging fruit” like ­swapping out lightbulbs to ­“bigger ticket” items such as ­replacing appliances with newer, energy-­saving models is fair game. Finding ‘energy hogs’ If you’re ready to take on a home ­efficiency makeover, ...Read More


Fire sparks volunteers

The call comes requiring immediate action. You hop in your truck and rush to the firehouse, quickly throw on 70 pounds of equipment and head out to the emergency. Time is of the essence and others are depending on your quick action. That is the life of an emergency responder, never knowing when that call will come, day or night, ...Read More