Bill will expand solar energy plan

Three Democratic legislators say a new law they wrote will help the state form a coherent strategy for expanding the solar energy market.  “The Solar Energy Advancement and Fair Competition Act” (A-3520), sponsored by Assemblymen Upendra Chivukula (D-Franklin) and Wayne DeAngelo (D-Hamilton) and Assemblywoman Linda Greenstein (D-Plainsboro), makes changes and adds new definitions to the Electric Discount and Energy Competition Act of 1999.  It required that the state Board of Public Utilities establish multi-year schedules for solar electric power generation sale or purchase requirements for electric power suppliers or basic generation service providers.

Gov. Jon Corzine signed the bill on Monday, the day before he left office.

“Solar and other alternative energies are the future, and taking steps to advance that industry in New Jersey is the smart approach not only for our residents, but for our economy,” said Chivukula, the Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee chairman. “With this, we now have a plan for advancing solar energy in New Jersey and that can only be a good thing.”

“Advancing solar energy equals jobs and a reinvigorated economy, plus energy savings for households throughout New Jersey,” said DeAngelo (D-Mercer/Middlesex). “A robust solar market will position our state to be a leader for years to come in alternative energy production.”

“This new law will bring savings for ratepayers and jobs for our state,” said Greenstein (D-Middlesex/Mercer). “We’ve already taken many strong steps to make New Jersey a leader in alternative energies and this is another step forward.”

Bill will expand solar energy plan