Legislation sponsored by Senator Jean Stanfield that requires the Board of Public Utilities to conduct a study on short-term solutions that would allow additional energy sources to connect to the electrical grid was approved by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee.
Sen. Stanfield’s bill requiring the BPU to find solutions that would allow additional energy sources to connect to the electrical grid was approved by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee. (Pixabay)
“New Jersey has ambitious goals to promote and expand renewable energy projects, but the infrastructure must be in place for these initiatives to work,” said Stanfield (R-8). “Our legislation offers four potential solutions that could open segments of the electrical grid that are currently closed to new energy sources and instructs the BPU to identify alternative solutions as well.”
State and local governments have invested billions of dollars into renewable energy while the expansion of the electrical grid has lagged. Last year, researchers at Princeton stated that to reduce carbon emissions, the pace of grid expansion in the United States must “more than double” the rate of expansion seen during the previous decade.
Senator Stanfield’s bipartisan legislation (S-3489) with Senator Bob Smith (D-17) mandates that within one year the BPU must report the findings of their study to the Governor and Legislature with recommended regulatory actions to improve the delivery of electricity throughout the state.
The BPU would be required to implement its recommendations as a regional pilot program for one year. If their recommendations prove successful, rules and regulations would be implemented statewide.
“The process of building the infrastructure needed to open the grid for new energy sources will take time,” added Stanfield. “It is necessary to find solutions that make our energy grid sufficient to support new energy projects in New Jersey.”