New Jersey legislators fail to pass bill to help solar sector

Thursday, January 12, 2012 @ 09:01 AM
posted by rene5432

A late attempt by New Jersey legislators to offer support for the state's struggling solar sector before the end of the session fell through earlier this week, according to Platts.

New Jersey has become one of the most important states for the solar industry, adding more solar installations in the past few years than any other state aside from California.

Much of this success can be attributed to the state's high electricity rates, but New Jersey also helps pay for these solar power systems by requiring utility companies to provider a certain proportion of renewable electricity. Businesses and homeowners can benefit from this policy by selling so-called solar renewable energy certificates, which represent the production of 1 megawatt-hour of solar energy.

However, the SREC market has dropped off dramatically recently as the state has easily surpassed its targets for solar installations. In September of last year, the price for SRECs dropped as low as $166.73 each, from as high as $680 when the policy first began in 2008, according to SRECTrade.

New Jersey legislators hoped to raise this price by requiring a higher proportion of electricity to come from solar power installations in specific, but the bill was held up by legislators concerned about passing costs on to state residents.

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