Natural Gas Co. Installs Solar at State Park

New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG) announced the completion of a solar energy demonstration project at Island Beach State Park. A photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof of a bathhouse pavilion will generate electricity used to heat water for showers and sinks through a partnership with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU), New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), GeoGenix and other solar companies.

The PV system installed on the roof of the pavilion is expected to generate approximately 11,055 kWhs each year and cut the bathhouse’s energy consumption by 28 percent. Through net-metering, it will continue to produce electricity for the region when not needed for the facility. NJNG led the project as part of the company’s ongoing commitment to energy efficiency and the use of environmentally friendly energy sources. “It surprises people to hear about a natural gas company actively promoting the use of solar energy and encouraging energy efficiency, but New Jersey Natural Gas has always believed that in managing our natural resources, we must also do our part to ensure a clean and healthy world for future generations,” said Laurence M. Downes, NJNG chairman and CEO. GeoGenix LLC., a Rumson solar energy company installed the system.By using the sun to generate electricity, the system will eliminate about 16,800 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually that would have been produced if the electricity were purchased from the local utility. The system is also expected to save Island Beach State Park more than $1,680 in yearly electricity expenses. A grant from New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program through the BPU Office of Clean Energy provided 70 percent of the cost of the PV system and its installation, and NJNG funded the balance. GeoGenix contributed engineering, labor costs and a data acquisition system that tracks the amount of electricity generated by the PV system on a display located inside the bathhouse. Other labor costs to install the system were donated by Absolutely Energized, Bald Eagle Solar Technology, LBI Solar and Sea Bright Solar.
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