Since 2003, the Office of Clean Energy within the Board of Public Utilities has administered the New Jersey Clean Energy Program, which has offered statewide customer energy efficiency programs. Prior to this, the regulated energy utilities in New Jersey had been responsible for administering electric and natural gas efficiency programs. A collaborative of stakeholders, called the New Jersey Clean Energy Council, provides input to the Board of Public Utilities on programs.
New Jersey electric programs saved 347.9 GWh in 2010, equal to 0.44% of sales. The state budgeted $106 million for natural gas efficiency programs and $225 million for electric efficiency programs in 2011. However, Governor Christie re-allocated $42.5 million from the state’s Clean Energy Fund in FY 2011 to pay state energy bills and will do the same in FY2013, with a reallocation of $210 million.
Reported budgets for energy efficiency programs for 2011, and electricity savings for 2010, are in the State Spending and Savings Tables for all states.
Energy efficiency and renewable energy programs in New Jersey are administered by the Office of Clean Energy within the Board of Public Utilities (BPU) under the New Jersey Clean Energy Program. Prior to 2003, the utilities were required to administer and implement energy efficiency programs with oversight from the Board of Public Utilities. The utilities worked together through a collaborative to coordinate their efforts and ensure program consistency. This approach was taken for the initial "Comprehensive Resource Analysis" (CRA) period—2001–2003—and was the result of the BPU’s Final Decision and Order on the CRA proceeding, issued March 9, 2001. In this order, the BPU directed the utilities to administer the energy efficiency and renewable energy programs jointly.
In 2002, the New Jersey BPU began a re-assessment of this administrative structure. In 2003, the BPU established the New Jersey Clean Energy Council as advisors to the BPU. The council provides planning assistance for the administration of the programs. It also was charged in this initial order to work with BPU staff to assess components of the programs and make recommendations. The BPU decided in 2003 to revise the structure of program. The BPU gave responsibility for program administration to the Office of Clean Energy. The utilities are still responsible for collecting revenues for the programs, but they transfer these funds over to a third-party fiscal agent supervised by the Office of Clean Energy. Utilities are responsible for program implementation only. Individual energy efficiency and renewable energy programs are offered statewide, with each utility providing program services to its customers.
New Jersey electric utilities, through the NJ Clean Energy Program, reported efficiency program savings of 347,906 MWh in 2010, equivalent to around 0.44% of sales. Reported budgets for energy efficiency programs for 2011, and electricity savings for 2010, are in the State Spending and Savings Tables.
In New Jersey there is a pilot self-direct program run by TRC for the New Jersey Clean Energy Program, funded by the cost-recovery mechanism (CRM). To qualify, customers must have contributed at least $300,000 in CRM funds in 2010 and be among the 25 top contributors in 2010. The pilot program reserves a specific amount of CRM contributions for use as a grant towards future energy efficiency investments. Customers will receive between $200,000 and $1 million based on a variety of factors and have one year to complete their project. Self-direct customers may not participate in other New Jersey Clean Energy Program programs. They may take advantage of incentive programs offered by other state and local entities but the total incentives may not exceed 100% of the project costs. More information on large customer self-direct programs can be found in the ACEEE report, Follow the Leaders: Improving Large Customer Self-Direct Programs.
Energy efficiency programs are funded by a systems benefits charge assessed against all investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities. The SBC is a non-bypassable fee assessed by the energy utilities at the point of use for both natural gas and electricity.
The state budgeted $106 million for natural gas efficiency programs and $225 million for electric efficiency programs in 2011. However, Governor Christie re-allocated $42.5 million from the state’s Clean Energy Fund in FY 2011 to pay state energy bills and will do the same in FY2013, with a reallocation of $210 million.
Reported budgets for energy efficiency programs for 2011 are in the State Spending and Savings Tables.
New Jersey’s set energy savings goals of 20% savings by 2020 relative to predicted consumption in 2020 in its Energy Master Plan of 2008, which guided the Clean Energy Program’s approved budget request for 2009-2011. However, these goals are advisory and lack consequence if they are missed. Utilities have not formulated any Furthermore, the $158 million taken by the Christie Administration from the Clean Energy Fund demonstrates the uncertainty surrounding these goals.
The BPU has yet to pursue a binding EERS that would require each electricity supplier/provider to meet energy efficiency goals. Although they are required to submit individual energy master plans pursuant to the New Jersey Energy Master Plan, these have been delayed indefinitely until the new administration sets forth its own Master Plan.
On October 12, 2006, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) approved requests by New Jersey Natural Gas Co. and South Jersey Gas Co. to replace their existing weather normalization clauses (WNC) with a conservation incentive program (CIP) that would capture gross margin variations related to both weather and customer usage. (Weather normalization clauses mitigate the financial effects of weather on utilities and their customers.) The three-year pilot programs, were extended through 2013 in a later Order. (BPU Docket Nos. GR05121019 and GR05121020.)
Atlantic City Electric and Rockland Electric Company have proposed a bill stabilization agreement that calls for monthly true-ups though a decision on the issue of lost revenues has been deferred. (Docket Eo09010056 See Order dated 11/20/09)
In New Jersey, traditionally, there were third party “Market Managers” selected by the NJ Office of Clean Energy (OCE) to run the energy efficiency programs in New Jersey. These Market Managers were eligible to receive a performance incentive, however in 2011, the OCE requested that the Market Manager significantly reduce their budgets and eliminate their performance incentive. (Docket Nos. Eo07030203 and Eo10110865)
New Jersey's restructuring statute requires that utilities perform “comprehensive resource assessments” for energy efficiency and renewable energy resources. These assessments account for system needs and costs.
The evaluationof ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs in New Jersey is not formally required but it is recognized that it is highly desirable and the Board approves an annual evaluation budget in an Order adopting annual program plans and budgets. Evaluations are administered by the both the utilities and the NJ Board of Public Utilities. New Jersey has formal requirements for evaluation articulated in 2010-2011 Evaluation and Research Planand Protocols to Measure Resource Savings\Revisions to December 2009 Protocols. Statewide evaluations are conducted. New Jersey uses all of the five classic benefit-cost tests identified in the California Standard Practice Manual. These are the Total Resource Cost (TRC), Utility/Programs Administrator (UCT), Participant (PCT), Social Cost (SCT), and Ratepayer Impact Measure (RIM). New Jersey does not have a primary cost-effectiveness test that it relies upon. The benefit-cost tests are required for total program and customer project level screening. New technologies must pass benefit cost screening at the measure level. The rules for benefit-cost tests are stated in BPU Docket No. EO08030164.