A few weeks ago, solar employees from around the state gathered in Springfield to talk to the state House and Senate energy committees about the Path to 100 Act. As a solar employee, I know we’re at a turning point right now when it comes to Illinois energy policy. The proposals making up the Path to 100 Act are the renewable energy solution we need right now.

Illinois needs more good quality jobs that will be accessible to people from a variety of backgrounds around the state. This year the Solar Foundation published a Jobs Census showing that the Illinois solar industry has seen a huge job boom in recent years, thanks to smart policy like the Future Energy Jobs Act. With support from legislators, there is potential for further growth. The solar industry is full of good jobs that don’t require a college degree, and cannot be automated or outsourced.

If the Path to 100 Act or similar legislation passes this year, opportunities will continue to expand in urban and rural communities alike. In fact, last year the number of new solar and wind jobs created in the rural Midwest far outnumbered those created by other types of energy industries.

I’m proud to work in an industry where I can make a good living while also helping create a better world for future generations. I hope lawmakers will take action to ensure others can enjoy these same benefits.

Lenny Weber

Project manager, Continental Electric

Oak Park

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