Save with solar in Trenton, New Jersey

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Trenton, New Jersey

Trenton is the state capital of New Jersey, and was also the national capital for a short time. Founded by the Quakers in 1679, it now has a population of over 80,000 and is part of the New York metropolitan area. Trenton is rich in historic legacy and was the place where George Washington achieved his first military victory on December 26, 1776, an event that is commemorated by the Trenton Battle Monument.

Like in many New Jersey cities, solar power has experienced significant growth in Trenton since 2010, due in large part to the solid renewable energy policies in the state:

  • Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G) owns and operates a 1.3-megawatt (MW) solar farm in Trenton. The project was built in 2010 and it is composed of more than 5,000 solar panels. This solar installation is part of the Solar 4 All Program, through which PSE&G is deploying 125 MW of solar power capacity in its service area.
  • Trenton is also home to the largest military solar power installation in the US, located at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst. The installation is one of the largest in the region, with more than 50,000 solar panels and a capacity of 16.5 MW.

What are the Benefits of Solar Power in Trenton, NJ?

New Jersey is one of the best states to invest in solar power, perhaps even better than California nowadays, and the city of Trenton is no exception. Energy from PSE&G is expensive, with average rates of 15 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), which means you can achieve significant savings by producing your own energy with solar panels. In addition, residents of Trenton can accumulate one Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC) for every 1,000 kWh of clean energy generated. Here is how solar can save you money in Trenton, NJ:

  • Generating 1,000 kWh of solar energy saves you around $150 on your electric bill.
  • As of early 2017, each SREC can sell for around $220.
  • If you add energy savings and SREC sales, the economic benefit is around $370 for every 1,000 kWh generated with your solar panel system.

Also, keep in mind that energy prices tend to increase on a yearly basis. Between 2016 and 2017, PSE&G rates increased significantly, raising the power bills of their customers by 5% on average. However, for home and business owners with solar panels, savings increase in the same proportion each year!

The New Jersey Renewable Portfolio Standard requires all utilities in the state to procure 22.5% of their energy from renewable sources by 2021, and there is a specific solar generation goal of 4.1% by 2028. This solid renewable energy policy has led to generous incentives for solar panels systems:

  • Tax exemption: In New Jersey, the sales tax associated with your solar system is waived when you first purchase your solar panels. Additionally, home and business owners do not receive a property tax hike after installing solar, even though the value of your property increases significantly.
  • PSE&G loan program: The local utility is willing to lend you money for solar panel systems, if you agree to pay them back with the SRECs earned by your installation. They offer a fixed purchase price, which is great because SRECs tend to decrease in value over time.
  • NJ Clean Energy Residential New Constructions Program: If you are planning to build a new home, the use of renewable generation and energy efficiency can make you eligible for attractive rebates.

There is also a nationwide federal tax credit that covers 30% of your upfront investment in solar as a tax deduction, and you can apply it a soon as you file your next tax declaration. When this is combined with SREC sales and the other incentives available in Trenton, solar panel systems become one of the best investments you can make for your property.