New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG) has secured approval from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to expand its energy-efficiency programs through the SAVEGREEN Project.
The SAVEGREEN Project will help customers better understand and manage their energy usage, reduce emissions and save money. NJNG is authorized to invest $135m over the next three years to provide customized energy solutions to assist residential, public entities, such as schools, and small commercial customers save money on their energy bills.
New Jersey Natural Gas chief operating officer Steve Westhoven said: “Energy efficiency is one of the most effective ways we can help our customers save energy and money, protect our environment and create a stronger and fairer clean energy economy.
“With today’s approval, we are committed to helping support New Jersey’s clean energy agenda, advancing energy efficiency and providing even more opportunities to help customers save.”
Beginning in next January, NJNG will roll out new and expanded programs for the residential and commercial markets, with programs and features available for low- to moderate-income customers and public entities, to help eliminate barriers to energy efficiency and make the benefits more accessible.
These new offerings include Home Energy Reports that provide customized, easy-to-implement recommendations to reduce consumption and improve energy efficiency to participating homeowners. A free, online home energy audit also will be available to help customers better understand their energy usage and opportunities for savings.
Also approved is a $49 Home Energy Assessment performed by one of NJNG’s Building Performance Institute certified auditors. This comprehensive, independent analysis is designed to help identify potential home energy savings for customers. As a part of this assessment, auditors will install low-cost energy-saving measures, such as insulation gaskets and LED lightbulbs, and provide energy-saving tips.
NJNG will promote low and moderately priced energy-efficiency products, such as smart thermostats and weatherization kits, through an online marketplace. No-cost conservation kits will also be provided to local foodbanks to distribute to their clients, helping ensure all customers, particularly senior citizens and low- to moderate-income residents, have access to energy savings.
For commercial and industrial customers, NJNG will introduce new offerings to meet their specific needs, while continuing to support specific commercial programs offered by the New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program (NJCEP). Qualifying commercial customers implementing energy-efficiency upgrades through NJCEP’s Direct Install and SmartStart Building programs will be eligible to participate in NJNG’s On Bill Repayment Program (OBRP) for no-interest funding for the amount of the project not covered by NJCEP.
To help address the needs of smaller commercial customers, NJNG will introduce SAVEGREEN on Main. This new program will offer qualifying customers using less than 5,000 therms annually, a free energy assessment — including a customized report summarizing energy-saving installation options, upgrades and a cost-benefit analysis for future improvements — to help identify potential energy-saving opportunities. Customers will be eligible for upfront incentives and will be able to finance the balance, up to $50,000, through NJNG’s OBRP.
NJNG also will offer tailored assistance to help reduce the energy burden for nonprofit organizations and public service entities, such as municipalities, universities, schools and hospitals. NJNG will provide expert service, including an in-depth audit and energy-saving recommendations, to those customers undertaking large energy-efficiency projects, with no up-front costs. NJNG will buy down the simple payback of the recommended energy-efficiency project costs for approved measures and the remaining project costs may be financed through an OBRP.
Since 2009, NJNG has invested nearly $160m in energy-efficiency programs through SAVEGREEN, generating more than $392m in economic activity in its service territory while reducing greenhouse emissions. Over the last decade, nearly 52,000 customers have participated in SAVEGREEN, and the program has grown the green energy economy in New Jersey for the more than 2,600 contractors who have participated in the program.
The average annual impact for the typical residential heating customer using 1,000 therms per year over the life of the program is estimated to be $9.94 or 1%. If fully subscribed, the program will result in a reduction of more than 1.5 million tons in carbon dioxide emissions.
Source: Company Press Release