renewable energy resources

Top 13 + 2 Actions to Improve Energy Efficiency of a House



Provided by the Oak Park Environment & Energy Advisory Commission, this is a great step-by-step guide for things you can do to make your home more energy efficient. Click here to visit.

Building Energy Codes Program

Department of Energy website with resources and information around building energy codes. By 2035, 75% of the buildings in the U. S. will be new or renovated per Architecture 2030. As a building’s operation and environmental impact is largely determined by upfront decisions, energy codes present a unique opportunity to assure savings through efficient building design, technologies, and construction practices. Once a building is constructed, it can be significantly more expensive to achieve higher efficiency levels. Including energy as a fundamental part of the building construction process and making early investments in energy efficiency yields benefits for all owners and occupants for years into the future. Click here to visit.

Energy Conservation Information Online

Residents can calculate energy consumption with a personalized energy calculator at, a website sponsored by the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), in partnership with the City of Chicago, City of Rockford, ComEd, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Illinois Science & Technology Coalition, Nicor Gas, North Shore Gas, Peoples Gas and The Northern Illinois Energy Project. The website also offers tips on lowering energy bills, finding rebates for energy conservation efforts and locating contractors to replace broken or inefficient appliances and equipment. For more information, e-mail

Energy Savers

Comprehensive website of resources around energy use, energy efficiency and renewable energy.
The mission of the Energy Department is to ensure America’s security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions. Click here to visit. 

10 Steps to Going Solar by J. Alan Prechel

The Crystal and Alan Prechel Family have 29 solar panels, 4 chickens, and 2 electric cars, in addition to 3 adorable children.

The Crystal and Alan Prechel Family have 29 solar panels, 4 chickens, and 2 electric cars, in addition to 3 adorable children.

The Prechel home was one of six on view in Oak Park for the 2016 Illinois Solar Tour. Alan Prechel’s installation was unique on the tour because his was primarily a “do it yourself” project. If you are considering solar for your home or business, whether you plan to hire a contractor or not, you will be better prepared for the task after reading Alan’s account, his steps and decisions, his hints and cautions, and his successes and failures. Click here for a PDF.


Non-profit with a variety of tools and resources for local governments interested in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Click here to visit.

Elevate Energy

Invite Elevate Energy to a house party with neighbors or friends. They talk about energy efficiency improvements, and you receive a free energy audit of your home. Learn more at this link.

Other Useful Websites Promotes energy efficient products and practices for home and business. Promotes urban sustainability.


Home Energy Savings Program

The Home Energy Savings Program is a joint program of Nicor Gas and ComEd, targeted to serve single family customers. The program offers a comprehensive Home Energy Assessment that evaluates opportunities for energy efficiency upgrades and provides financial incentives for completing those upgrades, all at a cost of only $99 (this can typically cost up to $500*).

Benefits include:

  • Instant rebates of 70% up to $1,750 to complete recommended energy efficiency improvements such as insulation and air sealing.

  • A customized Home Energy Savings report detailing ways to save up to 20%† on your energy usage.

  • Free installation of up to 10 CFL’s, high efficiency faucet aerators and shower heads, and hot water pipe wrap.

  • Installation of a programmable thermostat, if desired,
    at a discounted price of $22.62.

Saving energy is as easy as…

  1. Schedule your Home Energy Savings assessment by calling toll-free  877.821.9988 .

  2. Once your assessment is completed, review the Home Energy Savings report that provides you with customized energy efficiency improvements, estimated savings, a fixed price proposal for the qualifying energy efficiency improvements and eligible rebates.

  3. After signing your proposal, a program participating contractor will be assigned to install your qualified energy efficiency improvements. The contractor will bill you only for your portion of the cost, collecting the rest from Nicor Gas and ComEd.

Limited time offer!

For details see the Home Energy Saver Web Site.  Please note that the Home Energy Saver Program is being promoted through Energy Impact Illinois.

Illinois Clean Energy Foundation

Funding organization that provides grants for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in Illinois.

Cook County Energy Efficiency Program

Free energy audits and funding and loans for energy efficiency projects through Cook County.

List of Certified Installers

List of contractors/electricians/energy experts for installing green/renewable energy resources: