New Jersey’s Plan to Reach the State’s 100% Clean Energy Target with Distributed Energy Resources

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Clean EnergyThe Garden State is paving the path to achieve 100% clean energy by 2050. To begin the process, Gridworks, GridLab and the Center for Renewables Integration joined forces to outline the benefits and necessary steps to reach New Jersey’s goal of 100% clean energy in their 2019 Energy Master Plan.

2019 Energy Master Plan

This master plan outlines the capabilities of distributed energy resources (DER) and how they can provide services to help homeowners and utility scale customers. DERs include solar panels, power plants, electricity storage, small natural gas generators, etc. Most of their solar development in New Jersey has come from the residential and C&I sectors. This transition concludes that DER will provide new services for both utilities and customers to reduce overall energy demand and create jobs across the state of New Jersey.

“In 2001, the year before I became the President of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, New Jersey had 6 solar installations across the entire state,” said Center for Renewables Integration (CRI) co-founder Jeanne Fox. “We pioneered innovative solutions then and now have more solar installed than any state in the Northeast. The principals in this report build on our past progress and will keep New Jersey on the forefront of fighting climate change for years to come.”

Key Recommendations

In order to reach the 100% renewable energy goal that New Jersey has set, Gridworks, GridLab and the Center for Renewables Integration outlined four key recommendations in the 2019 Energy Master Plan.

  • Integrate DER
  • Encourage electrification of buildings and transportation to reduce emissions
  • Deploy clean technologies in low-income communities
  • Conduct Holistic Grid Planning to reach 100% carbon free goal

Community solar will play a leading role in achieving this goal, which can offer access to clean energy for all New Jersey residents. Jeff Cramer, Executive Director of the Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA) explained, “We look forward to working with all DER providers and key decision makers in New Jersey to ensure community solar is largely included into the distributed energy resource mix that is currently being planned.”

At Intersect Energy, we are committed to helping New Jersey reach their goal of 100% clean energy by 2050. We offer a wide variety of renewable energy installations/services such as wind and solar. As renewable energy continues to increase in popularity, we are here to help our customers transition to renewable and sustainable energy sources. Contact us today if you have any questions or inquiries regarding renewable energies. We look forward to hearing from you!

New Solar Permit Software Could Bring Big Changes to the Solar Energy Market

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Solar PermitWith over 2 million solar customers in the U.S., new technology to help store solar power is on the rise. This technology is helping to reduce the cost of solar installations and is saving money for local governments. Solar power and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) are joining forces with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and many others to develop a new automated solar permit software for distributed solar storage.

The Cost

The cost to install solar energy in the U.S. has decreased 70% over the last 10 years, but costs are still much higher compared to other countries. The reason that the cost is higher in the U.S. is largely due to costs associated with permits, inspections and cancelation fees.

New Technology Will Reduce Costs

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Technology Transitions awarded the NREL $695,000 from their Technology and Commercialization Fund to develop a software platform called Solar Automated Permit Processing (SolarAPP) that will significantly reduce the time and cost of permitting applications. In turn, this will make solar energy more affordable for businesses, which will expand solar energy development and job growth.

“Inefficient permitting can cause frustration and added costs for Americans who just want to go solar,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, President and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association. “A streamlined, easy-to-use solution such as SolarAPP can cut down on burdensome applications and connect solar projects to the grid faster. A more reliable permitting experience will help both inspectors and solar customers save time and money without sacrificing safety or quality.”

The SolarAPP initiative builds on previous and existing programs, which will provide a streamlined process that will increase efficiency and reduce the time and cost of solar installation. This new initiative will lead to lower cancellation rates across the board and will make it more efficient and cost effective for business owners to access clean, affordable solar energy. This new platform could also benefit local governments that are facing budget constraints and growing workloads to keep up with the accelerated pace of solar energy development.

Interested in learning more about solar energy, contact the team at Intersect Energy today! We provide analysis, financing and structuring of alternative energy solutions for your site with a goal of reducing the site’s environmental impact while maximizing savings for you as the site owner. Contact us today to get started on your next solar energy project. Make sure you keep up with the latest news in the world of renewable energy by following us on LinkedIn!