New Jersey offshore wind project costs questioned | New Jersey

(Center Square) – New Jersey’s decision to invest more than $500 million in infrastructure for offshore wind projects requires the state to pay foreign companies a higher price for energy, Garden said. Questioned by the president of State Initiative.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced on April 28 that the New Jersey Economic Development Agency has signed a letter of intent with Oersted Offshore North America for Ocean Wind 1, New Jersey’s first offshore wind project. .

The governor’s office said once it reaches full scale, the New Jersey Wind Port will create up to 1,500 jobs and contribute more than $500 million annually to New Jersey’s economy. According to the release, the state expects the action to create more than 200 pre-assembly, loading and unloading operations and hundreds of indirect jobs in South Jersey.

“Today’s announcement with Oersted is proof that our strategy to establish New Jersey as a national leader in offshore wind power is working, and we are on track to reach our goal of 100% clean energy by 2050. ,” Murphy said in a release.

But the state’s track record in investing in economic development appears to be lacking for Regina Egea, head of the Garden State Initiative. The organization prides itself on being a nonpartisan research and education organization that provides practical solutions to the state and local challenges facing New Jersey.

“Since June 2019, New Jersey taxpayers have invested over $500 million in enhancements to various South Jersey ports. Yet, the announced job creation and resulting economic benefits have not been audited. hmm,” Egea told Center Square.

Ørsted is partnering with PSEG on the Ocean Wind 1 project. Projected to generate 1,100 megawatts, he in New Jersey could power 500,000 homes annually, the release said.

“At the same time, New Jersey’s 1.5 million tollpayers received current cost premiums from foreign commercial firms based on three separate awards made by the state’s BPU for Ocean Wind I, II, and III. We are committed to buying electricity at three times the price of the electricity,” Egea said.

The state has signed contracts with Ocean Wind I, II, and III, which she said means $90 per megawatt versus $28, at an average rate three times the current wholesale rate.

State residents have not been told how high their utility bills will be in the next three to eight years once the Ocean Wind project goes online, she said.

“Our state energy costs are already 15% above the national average. Making New Jersey more affordable is definitely not low on the priority list for everyone involved in this effort.”

Despite concerns, the announcement advances the governor’s commitment to meet the goal of 7,500 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035, according to the release, said Joseph L. of the New Jersey Public Utilities Commission. Fiordaliso President said.

“The New Jersey Wind Port is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to establish New Jersey as a center for the wind industry and bring thousands of jobs and billions of dollars of economic investment back to our state,” Fioda Riso said in a release. said.

NJEDA and Salem County stakeholders are also collaborating on initiatives for small businesses and local residents in the windshore industry. An agreement with the Salem County Vocational Technical School provides the school with up to $200,000 to help expand programs that prepare students for jobs in heavy steel offshore wind component manufacturing.

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