NJ Clean Energy Program: Save Energy, Save Money, and Get Paid To Do It
Published in: Community Trends
By: Ben Rosenzweig, PE
Executing energy efficiency projects can be expensive. High efficiency equipment costs more than standard efficiency equipment, construction takes time and costs money, and sometimes it just doesn’t seem worth it. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could execute an energy efficient project and get paid to do it? The New Jersey Clean Energy Program (NJCEP) is here to help. The NJCEP has a multitude of energy efficiency project incentive and rebate programs available to subsidize the cost of executing energy efficiency projects. Large or small, there is always something to be recovered.
The NJCEP currently offers the following major programs, which are all available to qualifying customers for a variety of energy efficiency projects:
Pay for Performance (P4P)
P4P is a holistic building savings program for new construction and existing buildings with an annual peak demand of 200 kW or more. With a maximum available incentive of $2 million per project, the P4P program offers the highest incentive of any NJCEP program currently available to most customers. In order to qualify for P4P, your energy efficiency project must yield 15% or higher source energy savings and you will need to retain the services of a state approved P4P partner like Energy Squared. Incentives for this program are issued in three phases and are limited by facility square footage, overall project cost, and actual source energy savings.
Direct Install (DI)
The DI program is targeted towards commercial users with annual peak demand of less than 200 kW, annually. DI covers 70% of overall project cost, leaving only 30% of the cost for you to pay. Under this program, the NJCEP appointed manager in your area will conduct a facility energy audit and recommend a menu of available energy efficiency projects. Following the audit and selection of projects, the NJCEP approved installation contractor in your region will execute the projects and aid in rebate and incentive capture.
This program provides incentives for most retrofit and renovations projects. Certain new construction projects are also covered. This program covers nearly all energy consuming equipment and rebate magnitude is directly related to new equipment efficiency and size. Maximum available rebates for this program are capped at $500,000 per utility account and projects require pre-approval before purchasing and installation of new equipment.
Large Energy Users
While most small commercial facilities will not qualify for the Large Energy Users program, this program offers huge incentives to some of the state’s largest energy consumers. This program offers up to $4 million in incentives to customers who have paid over $300,000 in systems benefits charges over the previous fiscal year. Additionally, the facility must demonstrate an average peak demand of over 400 kW or 4,000 MMBtu in natural gas consumption.
PJM Demand Response
PJM offers two different demand response programs, currently. Both programs offer direct payments to qualifying customers based on agreed upon load reduction steps. Payment magnitudes vary depending on whether you partner in the Economic Load Response or Emergency Capacity program. However, you must offer a significant available load reduction to qualify.
Program specific data sourced from www.energy.gov
A majority of the available rebate and incentive programs require the services of a professional engineering consultancy in order to provide the necessary designs, plans, and specifications to execute energy efficiency projects. It is important that the engineering consultant you choose be knowledgeable and experienced in navigating the available NJECP programs. No one wants to leave money on the table, and the right engineering firm can help you ensure that that doesn’t happen.
Additional incentive programs and rebate information can be found at the following resource links:
NJCEP Homepage: www.njcleanenergy.com
US DOE NJ Site: www.energy.gov/eere/femp/energy-incentive-programs-new-jersey
DSIRE Database: http://www.dsireusa.org