More than half of output at New Jersey community solar array to be allocated to low-income subscribers
Governor Phil Murphy’s Office of Climate Action and the Green Economy and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) celebrated the launch of the first community solar project built on a closed landfill as part of the NJBPU’s historic Community Solar Energy Pilot Program. Community solar supports Governor Murphy’s commitment to achieving 100% clean energy by 2050 and provides access to clean energy for communities previously unable to use solar energy. The 3.1 MW solar plant, built by New Jersey developer Soltage at 900 Coopertown Road in Delanco Township, will provide clean energy to 700 households and spend 55% of its output on low and middle income subscribers (LMI ).
“We are very proud of the successful development of solar energy in the community, particularly projects at former landfills,” said NJBPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “Since these polluted sites are often unsuitable for other types of redevelopment, one of the best ways to use them in community is solar energy in a way that promotes equality by making the benefits of clean energy more accessible to New Jersey residents. . “
The union-built project received significant community support in the application for year 1 of the pilot program and identified guaranteed savings in the form of bills as an economic benefit to subscribers. Soltage also partnered with the Ladies in Transit Holistic Community Development Corporation to provide a job training workshop for local residents to learn about career paths in the solar energy industry.
“It was a pleasure to be involved with both Soltage and Pro-Tech Energy during the construction of the Tri-County Solar Farm,” said Mark Miller, Southern New Jersey Operations Manager at Huen Electric and member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 351. “The state’s renewable energy program has supported not only union electricians but our civil union operators as well. We look forward to remaining an important part of the state’s renewable energy goals. “
Operated by New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program, the Community Solar Energy Pilot Program provides access to solar power by connecting customers virtually to a solar installation within their electric utility’s service area.
NJBPU is reviewing 410 applications submitted for year 2 of the pilot program and expects to allocate capacity later this year. Year 2 allocated 150 MW of award capacity, including a 40% spin-off for projects serving LMI households.
News release from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU)
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