On Thursday, April 12th, the New Jersey Assembly and Senate passed Assembly Bill 3723 (AB-3723) and Senate Bill 2314 (SB-2314). The bill now sits on the desk of Governor Phil Murphy (Dem) waiting to be signed, after passing the Assembly by a margin of 49-20-2 and the Senate by a margin of 29-8. The bill requires a number of action items to be carried out, including:
- Requiring the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities to:
- Administer an energy storage analysis
- Advance, increase, and extend the solar carve-out schedule and reduce and extend the solar alternative compliance payment schedule
- Introduce structural changes to the state SREC program
- Implement energy efficiency and peak demand reduction programs
- Implement a “Community Solar Energy Pilot Program”
- Offer tax credits for specified offshore wind facilities
- Requiring the Department of Labor and Workforce Development to establish job training programs for professionals in manufacturing and maintenance of offshore wind facilities
The bill requires 21% of statewide electricity sales to be derived from Class I renewable energy sources by January 1, 2020, 35% by January 1, 2025, and 50% by January 1, 2030. The cost of this requirement shall not exceed 9% of the electricity purchased by all NJ ratepayers for each energy year 2019-2021 and shall not exceed 7% in each energy year thereafter. In addition, all facilities filing SREC applications after the bill’s enactment date will be subject to a reduced SREC eligibility term of 10 years, down from 15.
No later than 180 days after the enactment of the bill, the board will implement rules to close the SREC program to new systems upon reaching the 5.1% solar carve-out target. The legislation intends to close the existing SREC program to new projects on or before June 1, 2021. Within 24 months from signing the legislation, the Board of Public Utilities will be required to conduct a study that evaluates how to modify or implement a new solar incentive program. A variety of market stakeholders will be consulted in the process to determine the next best steps forward for the NJ SREC market.
As shown below, the bill brings forward and raises the state’s solar carve-out requirements beginning with EY2019 and extends the requirements through EY2033. The requirement peaks at 5.10% in EY2021-2023 before gradually declining through EY2033. The reduction mechanic was introduced to account for solar facilities that will be reaching the end of their SREC production eligibility term.
The bill also reduces the solar alternative compliance payment (SACP) beginning with EY2019 and extends the SACP schedule through EY2033. The SACP level drops to $268 in EY2019 and then gradually decreases by $10 each year following.
For more information on the historical progress of the bill, please view our previous blog post on the topic here. SRECTrade will be publishing an updated New Jersey Supply and Demand Analysis to its blog shortly in consideration of this bill.