Energy Efficiency

Illinois Energy Now is an energy efficiency program administered by the State of Illinois that provides millions of dollars in rebates to public facilities that make large-scale equipment improvements to their electric and natural gas systems. More than $70 million is available annually to help fund these projects.

Check for Program Announcements, including open Requests For Applications,
on the DCEO Energy & Recycling homepage

Become a DCEO Trade Ally!

DCEO funding is for Public Sector entities only, and is separate from funding provided through similar programs with utility companies for businesses, 501c3s and private schools. If you are not a public sector organization, please check with your utility provider to see what energy efficiency programs may be available for you.
The following chart displays the funding availability for the Illinois Energy Now Public Sector Standard and Custom Incentive Programs. Please check below to make sure funding is currently available at DCEO before you fill out and submit an application to us. 


Ameren - YES
Comed - NO*
Natural Gas
Ameren - NO*
Nicor - YES
North Shore - LIMITED
Peoples - LIMITED 
 *Funds are committed and no new applications will be accepted.  Funds will be available by June, 2015 for projects completed after June 1, 2015. 

Why Apply?
Eligible organizations can save money in short-term and long-term.

  • Short-term savings: Potential reimbursement for up to 75 percent of energy improvement costs
  • Long-term savings : Reduced cost of future utility bills

Who Qualifies?
All Illinois public facilities located within Ameren Illinois and ComEd electrical service areas or Ameren Illinois, Nicor, North Shore or Peoples natural gas areas are eligible to take advantage of Illinois Energy Now. Examples of public facilities include: 

  • Local governments including municipalities, townships, and county facilities
  • Special units of local governments including library and park districts, public safety, water reclamation districts, and airport authorities.
  • Public schools including k-12, community colleges and public universities
  • State and federal agencies including corrections facilities and military bases.
What types of projects are eligible? 
Potential upgrades to electric and natural gas systems include but are not limited to: 
  • Lighting Equipment
  • HVAC Equipment
  • Gas Equipment
  • Variable Speed Drives
  • Kitchen Equipment
How do I apply? 
  • Step 1: Download program guidelines and application forms
  • Step 2: Complete application and submit to
  • Step 3: DCEO reviews application, gives notice to proceed and confirms rebate amount
  • Step 4: Upgrade qualifying electric and gas equipment
  • Step 5: Submit a final application with work completed and costs
  • Step 6: DCEO reviews final appliction and processes rebate
Where can I find more information on specific programs related to Illinois Energy Now programs for public facilities?
  1. Standard and Custom Incentive Programs
  2. New Construction Program
  3. Retro-commissioning Program
  4. Energy Efficiency Aggregation Program
  5. Natural Gas Boiler System Efficiency Program
  6. Combined Heat and Power Pilot Program
  7. Trade Ally Program
  8. ISBE School Energy Efficiency Grants
Where can I find more information on other Illinois Energy Now services?
  1. Building Industry Training and Education Program (BITE) Request for Application - During Program Year 2014-2015, the BITE Program will fund projects that provide statewide, regional, or sector-based capacity building through outreach, education, training, and application assistance to entities within the service territories of the following utilities:  ComEd (electric), Ameren Illinois (electric and natural gas), Nicor Gas (natural gas), Peoples Gas (natural gas), or North Shore Gas (natural gas).  The application period for this program is now closed.  Please click here to download past program guidelines and application (for reference only).  

    Illinois Energy Conservation Code for Commercial and Residential Buildings

    Illinois Home Performance with ENERGY STAR®

  2. Smart Energy Design Assistance - DCEO partners with the University of Illinois School of Architecture in order to provide technical assistance services to businesses, federal, state and local government, public schools, community colleges, public universities and colleges to assist clients who are considering energy efficiency improvements at existing facilities or to enhance baseline design of new facilities.

  3. Energy Performance Contracting Program - an innovative arrangement for designing, installing and financing energy improvement projects where the savings achieved by the project are guaranteed to amortize the cost of the project over the term of the agreement.

  4. Lights for Learning Program - A BRIGHT IDEA! - The Lights for Learning fundraiser is a great way to raise money for your school or organization by having students sell energy efficient Compact Fluorescent Light (CFLs) bulbs. CFLs can last up to 10 times as long as an incandescent bulb while using 75% less energy. Schools or organizations earn a 50% profit and a free educational assembly or classroom presentation about energy conservation.

  5. Savings Through Efficient Products (STEP) and free Green Nozzles Program

Where can I find more information on Low Income Energy Efficiency programs related to Illinois Energy Now?

  1. Public Housing Authority: Efficient Living - provides grants to Illinois Public Housing Authorities to upgrade and/or include energy efficient building practices in their buildings. 
  2. Energy Efficient Affordable Housing Construction Program - provides grants to Illinois based non-profit and for-profit housing developers to include energy efficient building practices in the rehab or new construction of affordable housing units. Average energy savings range from 50% to 75%. 
  3. Residential Retrofit Energy Efficiency Program - The Residential Retrofit Energy Efficiency Program funds entities that administer low income weatherization programs or other low income home improvement programs to support implementation of energy efficient measures in existing low income housing.  Application Currently Closed.  Please click the program link above to download past program guidelines and application (for reference only).
    Note: All applicants to the Residential Retrofit Program selected for a grant award are required as part of reporting requirements of the grant to submit the attached workbook to DCEO periodically throughout the grant term.  The workbook will be updated for the next program year beginning June 1, 2014.  Applicants are encouraged to review the workbook prior to submitting a residential retrofit grant application.
What if I don’t qualify for Illinois Energy Now but I’m interested in a similar incentive? 
Residential, commercial, industrial and non-profit organizations are eligible for energy efficiency incentives from their participating utility provider:

Illinois Municipal Electric Agency (IMEA) members are eligible for the  


Where can I find more information on the background of Illinois energy incentives? 

The “Green Nozzle” is a high efficient pre-rinse spray valve that will save 545 therms of natural gas annually due to a reduction in hot water usage. This program is designed to save members of the Public Sector *$400 annually on natural gas bills. Green Nozzles are provided for free if you are a public school, local, state or federal government, community college or public university. 
Please click here to watch how the Green Nozzle works: