“ComEd, Ameren supply most of budget for Illinois Power Agency, but as customers switch to other electricity suppliers, support for renewable energy dries up“
As dioxycarbophobes have long said, people respond to price cues and they are – by switching to cheaper suppliers and continuing to use energy as before
By law, 25 percent of Illinois’ electricity must come from wind, solar and other renewable resources by 2025.
But as more municipalities elect to buy power from suppliers other than Commonwealth Edison Co. and Ameren Illinois, developers of renewable energy are losing confidence that their projects will be funded long term. Some have already given up on Illinois.
That’s because the customer base that was expected to help pay for renewable energy development through electric bills is shrinking.
When the first long-term renewable contracts were signed in 2010, 99 percent of residential customers in the Chicago region received their electricity from ComEd. But a year ago ComEd projected its customer base will erode by 35 percent by 2017, cutting significantly into its budget for renewable energy.
And the switching is occurring at a rapid clip. As of Wednesday, 100 municipalities statewide had moved their residents to alternative suppliers, and another 160 had passed measures stating they intend to switch. Even Chicago is considering a measure that would switch residents to alternative suppliers.