New laws should enable more electric vehicle charging stations, increase solar development

Murphy: Package of four bills advances state’s transition to clean energy future

Gov. Phil Murphy signed a package of bills Friday that he hopes will increase solar development in New Jersey and facilitate installation of electric vehicle charging infrastructure throughout the state.

Even more, Murphy said he hopes the bills advance New Jersey’s transition to a clean energy future – saying they further his goal of reaching 100 percent clean energy by 2050. 

“Three and a half years ago we put forth one of the most aggressive plans in the nation to move New Jersey away from fossil fuels and towards a future based on clean and renewable energy technologies,” Murphy said. “From wind-turbine component manufacturing to solar energy installation to electric vehicles, the modernization of our energy sector will not only aid us in addressing climate change, but also drive significant economic growth and create good-paying, union jobs across the state.”

Murphy signed the following four bills:

  • S3223: Establishes numerical requirements and zoning standards for installation of electric vehicle supply equipment and Make-Ready parking spaces; 
  • A1653: Encourages development of zero-emission vehicle fueling and charging infrastructure in redevelopment projects; 
  • A4554: Establishes successor program to solar renewable energy certificate program in BPU, including solicitation process for certain solar power generation facilities; 
  • A5434: Establishes dual-use solar project pilot program for unpreserved farmland; allows land used for dual-use solar project to be eligible for farmland assessment under certain conditions.

Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver, who also serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs, said the bills will do a lot for electric vehicle adoption.

“In order to combat climate change and its devastating consequences, we must do all we can to make it easier for people and families to use and charge electric vehicles whether they live in a single-family home or in a multi-family dwelling,” she said. “Electric vehicles are the future, and everyone should have access to the environmental and economic benefits they provide.

“The legislation that Gov. Murphy signed will go a long way to supporting electric vehicle adoption across New Jersey. In fact, DCA is already at work crafting model ordinances to provide local governments with the ability to safely and efficiently approve the installation of electric vehicle service equipment and parking spaces that are pre-wired for electric vehicle infrastructure. DCA looks forward to continuing to do its part on electric vehicles and the broader effort to protect our environment.”

Board of Public Utilities President Joseph Fiordaliso said the bills will have impact.

“We are building on the success of New Jersey’s solar industry, which is going strong with over 142,000 installations in the state, as well developing the critical EV infrastructure necessary to help drivers make the switch,” he said.

EDA CEO Tim Sullivan agreed – saying clean energy is good for economic development. 

“Increasing the use of solar energy and zero-emission vehicles is not only essential for addressing the threat of climate change, but also creates important opportunities for long-term, sustainable economic growth,” he said. “Around the world, clean energy is a major job creator, and Gov. Murphy’s strong leadership in signing these bills is a critical step forward that will establish New Jersey as a leader in the fight against climate change while building a stronger, fairer economy.”