Statewide Renewable Energy Setback Standards

July 21, 2015


While Illinois does not have a model wind ordinance* in place, it has established a maximum setback limit for wind turbines.** State law has established that no municipality or county government may require a wind turbine (or other renewable energy system) used for onsite energy generation to be setback more than 1.1 times the height of the system from the end user's property line. Under H.B. 1201, municipalities may prohibit any electric-generating wind device with a nameplate capacity of 100 kilowatts or greater permitted after August 9, 2013, from locating within its corporate limits.

The Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs offers a database of county ordinances and zoning laws related to wind.

*Typically, model wind ordinances address more than just setback limits, and may also include guidance/recommended policies regarding multiple turbines, lot sizes, sound, insurance, aesthetics, and height, among others.

**The law specifies wind turbines as well as "other renewable energy system[s]," but in practice this limit will apply to wind turbines for onsite generation and use.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Regulatory Policy
State: Illinois
Incentive Type: Solar/Wind Permitting Standards
Web Site:
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar Water Heat
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Wind (Small)


Name: § 55 ILCS 5/5-12020
Date Enacted: 08/11/2009
Name: § 65 ILCS 5/11-13-26
Date Enacted: 08/19/2009
Name: H.B. 1201
Date Enacted: 08/09/2013
Effective Date: 08/09/2013


Name: David Loomis
Organization: Illinois State University
Address: Campus Box 4200
Normal IL 61761
Phone: (309) 438-7979

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.