Solar Panel Laws in New Jersey – What Incentives Are Available?
The solar panel laws in New Jersey seek to increase alternative energy production by providing incentives for the production of solar
and other forms of renewable energy.
Under New Jersey’s Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), electric utilities must produce 22.5% of electricity from renewable resources by 2021.
In addition, 4.1% must come from solar energy by May 2028.
To accomplish these standards, New Jersey offers several incentives for alternative energy production.
Solar Renewable Energy Certificates
Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) are performance payments issued to producers of solar power.
These certificates are usually sold through a broker and allow electric utilities to purchase credits as needed to meet the RPS requirements.
It is also possible to sell SREC’s to the solar installers or project developers to offset the cost of a project.
New Jersey has a net metering program.
This program allows generators of renewable energy to sell any unused power to the utility and receive credits in return.
Generators receive credits for the full retail value of the electricity up to their annual usage demand.
At the end of the annual period, any remaining credits are paid to the generator at the wholesale power rate.
The Board of Public Utilities has the option to limit participation to 2.9% of peak demand.
New Jersey has a three-tier system of interconnection standards based upon the size of the energy system.
Small residential systems of less than 10 kW have simple procedures and no application fees.
Larger systems may be required to install redundant external disconnect switches or purchase liability insurance.
The renewable energy system cannot have the capacity to exceed the generator’s annual electrical needs.
Sales Tax Exemptions
Solar energy equipment is exempt from the state 7% sales tax.
An exemption certificate must be completed and submitted in order to obtain the exemption.
Property Tax Exemptions
New Jersey offers a property tax exemption on residential solar power systems.
Under this exemption, the value of a solar system will not increase the property assessment.
However, this is subject to registration requirements.
The homeowner must apply for a certificate to obtain the exemption.
The New Jersey Clean Energy Program has discontinued the rebates on solar equipment.
The new focus for solar power generation incentives are on SRECs and net metering.
With several incentives for both solar and alternative energy sources, New Jersey has created a strong foundation for renewable energy production.