Jersey City is the second largest city by population in the state of New Jersey, with over 260,000 inhabitants. The city is also an important transportation and logistics hub; it is part of the Port of New York and New Jersey with plenty of railroad connections and direct metro access to Manhattan.
Jersey City is carrying out significant efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. In 2015, the municipal authorities unveiled a plan to become the greenest city in the country. Their action plan establishes many ambitious goals, setting an example for other municipalities. Jersey City has the following objectives:
It is important to note that Jersey City had been carrying out significant sustainability efforts even before publishing the new municipal plan. It has been named the 10th greenest city in the US, and dozens of its buildings have been granted the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification by the US Green Building Council.
There are several state and municipal mandates pushing forward the solar industry in Jersey City:
The local utility provider in Trenton is Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G). Residents of Jersey City have electricity prices of around 15 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). This rate is expected to increase year after year; in the last year alone, PSE&G rates increased by about 5%. If you invest in solar panels now, your savings will increase year after year!
A solar panel system in Jersey City also accumulates Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs). For every 1,000 kWh generated, the system owner is awarded a SREC. The price of each SREC, as of early 2017, is around $220. It is important to note that SRECs are earned even if you consume the energy produced by your solar panel system. Homeowners can also expect savings of about $150 from each 1,000 kWh of solar power generated, which means the total economic benefit of generating 1,000 kWh of solar power is around $370!
In addition to a generous cash flow from SREC sales, a solar panel system in Jersey City is eligible for various financing options and additional incentives.
If you own a lot of equity in your home, you can also evaluate low-interest loan options, such as a home-equity line of credit. The advantage is that you get all the SRECs and tax benefits, even if you purchase your solar panels with borrowed money: the solar panel system can pay off the loan by itself!