After significant delays, New Jersey finally released the State’s 2011 Energy Master Plan. As expected, the plan provides a significant commitment to solar power, but also addresses this year’s dramatic drop in SREC prices. The plan didn’t over incentivize the solar industry, and expands on the energy conservation incentives for existing buildings which is important given that little new construction is scheduled in the state. The plan also marks the State’s continuing commitment to nuclear power.
The solar portion of the plan includes a temporary acceleration of the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), the amount of energy from renewable sources that must be applied to New Jersey customers, allowing time for the industry to adjust to new lower prices. The overall goal of achieving 22.5% from renewable energy sources by 2021 will stay the same, but the goal of the new RPS requirement is to help alleviate the oversupply of SRECs, which in turn will stabilize the market and hopefully create demand for more projects. The plan also calls for reducing the Solar Alternative Compliance Payment (SACP) to minimize the impact on ratepayers.
Other items in the plan include: amending the Solar Advancement Act to change the RPS for solar energy from a fixed amount to a percentage of total energy consumed to promote the development of renewable resources; limiting SREC eligibility to projects that offer a 'dual benefit' of reducing costs and providing revenue for job creation and tax reduction; and supporting an extension of the long-term contracting programs offered by electric distribution companies.
The plan also calls for promoting energy conservation, including: improving the energy efficiency of state-owned and operated buildings; incorporating higher energy efficiency requirements within the state building code; expanding education; implementing programs including revolving loans for energy efficiency; and monitoring other incentives.
The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins, LLC. can assist clients with these energy / renewable energy issues. Please see contact information below.
About The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins, LLC
The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins, LLC is a boutique law firm located in Scotch Plains, New Jersey committed to providing the highest quality of legal services in the select areas of real estate,land use and environmental law. The firm is committed to working collaboratively with clients to achieve practical, cost effective results- whether it be in complex litigation, transactions, cleanups and/or development projects. The firm provides transactional and litigation counsel to a broad spectrum of clients including private and public corporations, trade associations, nonprofit institutions, banks, real estate investment trusts and individuals in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.
The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins, LLC
1812 Front Street
Scotch Plains, NJ 07076