Energy Security and Affordability Act Introdued to Ensure Reliable Service, Lower Bills in New Jersey

Senate Republican Leader Steven Oroho has introduced legislation to ensure that New Jersey is powered by reliable, diverse, and affordable energy sources.

“Unlike Governor Murphy’s extreme green energy plan that would make New Jerseyans dependent on the most unreliable and expensive sources of energy, we’re proposing a plan that would protect consumers from higher bills and ensure they have access to heat, power, and transportation when they need it,” said Oroho (R-24). “Our plan recognizes that it’s important for consumers to have affordable energy choices, redundancy for emergencies, and protections for the significant investments they’ve already made in their homes and businesses.”

Oroho said his legislation, S-3684, is a common-sense alternative to Governor Phil Murphy’s extreme green energy plan.

Under the governor’s recently accelerated plan, New Jersey would be required to fully electrify by 2035. Natural gas would be phased out, all new cars would have to be electric vehicles (EVs), and homeowners and businesses would have to replace non-electric mechanical systems and appliances, including boilers, furnaces, water heaters, and stoves.

Unlike the governor’s plan, Oroho’s “Energy Security and Affordability Act” is designed to protect New Jersey’s energy independence, diversity of energy sources, consumer choice and transparency, and affordability and reliability.

The bill achieves those goals by requiring the state’s Energy Master Plan to consider:

  1. the energy needs, supplies, and reliability in all geographic areas of the State;
  2. the use and development of diverse energy generation sources including, but not limited to, solar, wind, nuclear, hydrogen, natural gas, and renewable natural gas to assure a reliable and sufficient energy supply;
  3. the affordability of energy generation, transmission, and distribution to ratepayers;
  4. the prioritization of in-State energy generation, to the extent practicable and feasible to minimize subsidies for out-of-State energy generation; and
  5. the use of incentives, rather than mandates, when feasible, to increase consumer transparency and choice.

Additionally, the legislation limits intermittent energy sources, such as wind and solar, to 50% of the State’s energy generation portfolio.

“We learned during Sandy that downed power lines can takes weeks to restore in an emergency,” said Oroho. “Can you imagine how much harder our recovery would have been if people didn’t have gas stoves, gas fireplaces, and gas generators? If we were all reliant on EVs, nobody would have been able to charge their cars to go to work or to pick up groceries for their families. We’ve already seen instances in places like California where people have been told not to charge their cars because the grid was too fragile on hot days. Governor Murphy has said he wants to turn New Jersey into the California of the East Coast, but we don’t need to copy their mistakes. Our plan shows that you don’t need to go to extremes to protect New Jerseyans and the mix of affordable, reliable energy they need access to every single day.”

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