New Jersey – Yesterday New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed the Offshore Wind Economic Development Act, a law that will help spur the development of a vibrant offshore wind industry in the state.
The bill directs the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to develop an offshore renewable energy certificate program (OREC) that calls for a percentage of electricity sold in the state to be from offshore wind energy. This percentage support the development of at least 1,100 megawatts of generation from offshore wind projects, according to the announcement from the office of the governor.
Through the legislation, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) will provide financial assistance and tax credits to offshore wind project developers and associated equipment manufacturers and assembling facilities.
According to a report on NJ.com, the now struggling Paulsboro marine terminal, located on the Delaware River could become a turbine-manufacturing hub, providing turbines for the new offshore wind farms to be developed. Governor Christie said that the bill would create jobs and economic activity in the state.
“Developing New Jersey’s renewable energy resources and industry is critical to our state’s manufacturing and technology future. My administration will maintain a strong commitment to utilizing energy as industry in our efforts to make our state a home for growth, as well as a national leader in the windpower movement,” he said.
Fishermen’s Energy and Deepwater Wind, two offshore wind development companies, have had plans to develop offshore wind off New Jersey’s coast for some time.
In June, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and the governors of 10 East Coast states signed a Memorandum of Understanding that formally established an Atlantic Offshore Wind Energy Consortium to promote wind resources on the Outer Continental Shelf.