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Last Updated March 7, 2024

Program Overview


Financial Incentive



Incentive Type:

Grant Program



Start Date:


Expiration Date:


Web Site:

Applicable Sectors:


Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:



On March 6, 2024, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announced the Community Solar Energy Sovereignty Grant Program. The program supports community-based organizations and technical service providers in low-income and historically disadvantaged communities to plan, develop and execute community solar projects. Grantees will be selected through a competitive Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) process. Applications will be accepted until July 1, 2024 at 5:00 PM.

The goal of this grant program is to provide upfront seed capital funding to overcome barriers to project development caused by lack of capital in historically disadvantaged communities. The program prioritizes funding for community solar projects that are located in and provide community benefits to environmental justice or Restore Reinvest Renew (R3) communities. Environmental justice and R3 communities are areas where residents have historically been excluded from economic opportunities, including opportunities in the energy sector, and areas that experience high levels of pollution.

Grant funding may be used to support a variety of pre-development activities to benefit historically disadvantaged communities, including early-stage project planning, project team organization, site identification, procurement and contracting, securing financing, customer outreach, site assessments, and more. Funds may also be used to support the development of cooperative or community ownership models that allocate benefits to communities and support long-term governance, management, and maintenance of community solar projects.