New Jersey is ready to adopt clean and affordable renewable energy options that will help create a healthier and more prosperous future for our families.
By enacting smarter energy policies and planning, New Jersey can reduce its use of outdated, dirty fossil fuels and move toward locally-produced, renewable energy that will create jobs, build our economy and ensure safe, healthy communities.
New Jersey was one of the first states to require that a percentage of our power come from renewable energy sources. But more recently, other states have set more aggressive goals.
- In October 2015, California extended its Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requiring each utility to provide 50% of its sales from renewable energy by 2030. California is poised to meet an aggressive goal of 33% renewable energy by 2020.
- Governor Cuomo of New York recently directed his agencies to achieve 50% renewable energy by 2030.
Although Hawaii is the state most dependent on dirty fuels, today it has big plans for the future. The Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, signed into law by Governor David Ige on June 8, 2015, aims to achieve 100% clean energy by 2045.
When it comes to renewables, New Jersey is behind the curve.
Currently, the Garden State’s energy master plan calls for generating 22.5% of our energy from renewables by 2020, as shown in the chart below.
Last year, the NJ State Senate passed legislation that would gradually increase the percentage of renewable energy in New Jersey to 80% by 2050. Unfortunately, the Assembly did not consider this important legislation.
Solar is growing across the U.S., driven partially by state policy to promote clean energy and partially by competitive forces. As the cost of solar has plummeted, it has become the lowest-cost source of electricity in some parts of the country.
A decade ago, the Department of Energy established goals to reduce the cost of solar across the U.S. This chart shows the actual cost of residential solar in 2010 (52 cents) compared to the actual cost in 2017 (16 cents). The cost is expected to fall to 10 cents by 2020 and 5 cents by 2030. The rapid cost declines of residential solar, commercial solar and utility solar help to explain the rapid growth of solar throughout much of the U.S.
At the end of 2016, there were 28 states that had more than 100 MW-AC of installed solar capacity, and New Jersey ranked #5.