Library from New Jersey
“I think it’s time to reiterate our position on wind farms,” he said. “I’d like to request the mayor send a letter to the governor once again to let him know we support wind farms, but they must be 33 miles offshore.” The council agreed and determined the required action did not require a formal motion and vote. Instead, Meehan agreed to send the requested letter to the governor. DeLuca said the reasoning behind asking to push the wind turbines even farther offshore was because technological advances since the original approval by the PSC have resulted in the development of much taller turbines capable of producing even more energy.
The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities said Ørsted will receive offshore renewable energy credits (ORECs) worth $98.10 per megawatt-hour in the project’s first year of operation, lifting the average residential customer’s monthly bill by $1.46. The project will generate enough renewable power for the equivalent of half a million homes.
Part of the problem is the state has yet to calculate the cost of transforming New Jersey’s economy from one based on fossil fuels to clean energy, a big step that will mean more expensive bills, in some cases, largely funded by ratepayers. “When we look at the clean-energy costs, and it is expensive and we know it is expensive.’’ ...By most estimates, those subsidies have cost ratepayers nearly $3 billion over the past decade to support the program. The expense of future programs is more muddled.
Add it up: No net economic benefits. Environmental damages. Growing public opposition. A variety of likely legal actions. The Great Lakes are held in the public trust by each bordering state and Canada. Accordingly, any proposal that will pollute and endanger the lakes should be wholly rejected by the agencies charged with protecting them, in this case the OPSB.
But many business groups oppose reentering RGGI at all. Tony Bawidamann, vice president of government affairs at the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, said the cap-and-trade program amounts to a tax on businesses that will be passed on to consumers in the form of higher energy costs. “This makes us less competitive in the region because the ratepayer is going to be paying more and more for energy use,” Bawidamann said. ...“It’s a costly state to live in, and this makes it even more costly,” he said.
In fact, the BPU declined to identify the three bidders who submitted applications in a press release announcing what it described as regaining New Jersey’s place as a “leader when it comes to clean renewable energy and offshore wind power.’’ Asked to supply further details about the projects in emails and phone calls, Peter Peretzman, a spokesman for the agency responded, “We are not sharing additional information at this time.’’
The price quoted by Nautilus was too high given the unsubstantiated benefits, and therefore an unacceptable burden for the state’s ratepayers. This includes the proposed OREC starting price plus the annual escalator. Board staff made this clear to Nautilus at multiple points during negotiations over the last three months, but the price never came down to an acceptable level.
“If someone is going to be the capital of offshore wind, we sure want it to be New Jersey,’’ said Tim Sullivan, CEO of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority at an event yesterday touting offshore wind’s economic benefits to the state at Princeton University.
“The project is simply too expensive and will lead to more costs than benefits for New Jersey ratepayers despite the fact that these cost burdens, according to the company, may amount to only a few dollars per year,’’ Dismukes said. ...most offshore-wind development in the U.S. “is moving forward quickly with expansive programs that effectively skip any form of ‘experimental’ or ‘pilot’ process.’’
The three offshore wind companies with the ability to build turbines off New Jersey ...are in a competition for a ratepayer subsidy to build and run their facilities for 20 years, and that makes them cautious about describing the size and cost of their planned projects, where they will connect with New Jersey’s grid, and how they will minimize cost and maximize economic value to the state.
LONG BRANCH – Offshore windmills may be the future of energy here, but they're presently a source of agitation to commercial fishermen.
Today, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) unanimously approved an order opening an application window for 1.1 GW of offshore wind capacity. According to the NJBPU, this represents the nation’s largest single-state solicitation of offshore wind to date.
“We urge that you issue a solicitation for the full 1,100 (megawatts) as quickly as possible,” said Abby Watson of Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, which she said is the world’s largest offshore wind turbine manufacturer. “Many have mentioned the federal investment tax credit — worth roughly 12 percent of the capital cost of a farm — which will save ratepayers hundreds of millions of dollars.”
Doug Copeland, regional development manager for EDF, declined to say what the project will cost overall nor its specific impact on ratepayers. “We are estimating it will cost a small cup of coffee,’’ he said. Under legislation Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law earlier this spring, the BPU has 90 days to review the project.
Fishermen’s Energy and California-based EDF Renewables North America have submitted a joint petition for approval of the Nautilus Offshore Wind project off the coast of Atlantic City, the two companies announced Monday.
For New Jersey, the order by FERC could unravel long-standing legislative initiatives to promote cleaner sources of energy like solar power, as well as the state’s proposed subsidies to keep nuclear power a part of its energy mix by having ratepayers subsidize plants it deems uneconomic.
New Jersey is moving forward with a plan to install enough offshore wind turbines to power 1.5 million homes by 2030. How do gusts 20 miles off the coast turn into the electricity that lights up your home when you flip a switch?
Offshore-wind developers are pressing the BPU to begin accepting applications before the end of the year, fearing that if the state does not move swiftly, they will not be able to qualify for lucrative federal tax credits. The credits expire at the end of 2019 and developers need to start spending big dollars on their projects before then or they will not qualify for the incentives.
Danish offshore wind giant Orsted has opened an Atlantic City office and is pursuing building a large-scale project about 10 miles off the coast of the resort. It recently deployed equipment to study wind and wave speed and direction at a potential site. A spokesman has said it could have a wind farm built by 2025 if the OREC program is in place quickly and if its project is chosen for funding.