Tags: solar | industry | new | jersey

NJ Solar Industry Seeks 'Legislative Fix'

Wednesday, 25 Apr 2012 08:25 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

New Jersey’s once thriving solar industry may go dark unless lawmakers ramp up how much electricity energy suppliers must buy from solar power systems, experts say.
 
The worth of solar supply certificates is rapidly dropping because so many developers have rushed to take advantage of state and federal incentives to install the technology, reports njspotlight.com.
 
If the prices of the certificates, or so-called SRECs, continue to drop, industry officials believe the solar energy market could dry up by summer because it would be unable to support new solar development.
 
“The only thing that will help this is a legislative fix,” said Michael Flett, president of the Flett Exchange, a brokerage firm that deals in solar supply certificates. He said if the state ramps up its efforts, New Jersey could achieve its solar goals more quickly than originally thought.
 
Fred DeSanti, a spokesman for the New Jersey Solar Energy Coalition, agreed the problem needs to be solved.
 
“Either this is fixed or this is over until 2016,” he said. “Everyone will walk away from the state for two to three years. That’s really where we are at.”
 
The solar industry has been a bright spot in New Jersey and has grown consistently despite the state’s sluggish economy. The state is second only to California in installed solar systems.
 
So far, Gov. Chris Christie’s administration and state lawmakers have been unable to get the industry to settle on a compromise that would halt the solar credit price decline.

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