New Jersey set new single-month records for installed solar capacity and number of installations in June, according to the state’s Governor, Chris Christie.
The achievement brings the State’s installed solar capacity to more than 380 MW generated from over 10,000 solar arrays statewide, a new milestone.
“Reaching 10,000 solar installations in New Jersey demonstrates this Administration’s commitment to continue to promote and expand the state’s solar industry and is a critical element of our long-term energy strategy,” said Governor Christie.
“This ground-breaking achievement is the latest example of New Jersey’s leadership as one of the largest and fastest growing solar energy markets in the United States.”
New Jersey is second in the nation in both installed solar capacity and number of installations; only California has more.
New Jersey has 10,086 solar energy array projects installed across the state providing over 380 MW of installed capacity, due in large part to the State’s Solar Renewable Energy Certificate (SREC) Registration Program.
During June 2011 alone, 520 solar projects totaling over 40 MW of capacity were installed, representing the most projects and the largest amount of solar capacity installed in one month.
“Solar energy is more than just a form of clean distributed generation. These projects provide an opportunity for the involved business to improve its bottom line and grow in New Jersey, stimulating economic development,” said Lee A. Solomon, President, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.
Recognizing the critical nexus of environmental and economic benefits, Governor Christie has called for more solar projects on landfills and brownfields as an important element of his draft 2011 Energy Master Plan.
Last year, he signed legislation exempting solar panels from certain land use restrictions, identifying solar energy developments as an environmentally important land use.
New Jersey had one of the strongest growth markets for solar energy installations in 2010 and in the first quarter of 2011.
For the first quarter of 2011, New Jersey installed 42 MW of solar, representing 49 percent growth over first quarter 2010. The state has primarily become a market for non-residential projects over 100 kW and most growth over the past few quarters has been in larger projects over 1MW.
In addition, New Jersey has the nation’s most robust and mature SREC market, along with the best availability for long-term SREC contracts, which make project financing much easier to obtain.
“Solar energy—along with clean, in-state power generation from offshore wind, natural gas and nuclear, and new technologies such as alternatively fueled vehicles—is a key component of a greener, more affordable vision for New Jersey’s energy future,” said DEP Commissioner Bob Martin.
“The draft 2011 Energy Master Plan reinforces the Christie Administration’s commitment to promoting solar where it makes both environmental and economic sense, expanding implementation of commercial and industrial solar projects.”
Original article – Solar Energy News