By Ramona du Houx On September 21, 2022 Governor Phil Murphy signed an executive order to ramp up New Jersey’s offshore wind goal to 11 gigawatts by 2040, an increase of nearly 50 percent from its previous goal of 7.5 GW. The governor’s new goal will generate enough offshore wind power to supply roughly 10 million homes for one year, and […]
By Ramona du Houx
On September 21, 2022 Governor Phil Murphy signed an executive order to ramp up New Jersey’s offshore wind goal to 11 gigawatts by 2040, an increase of nearly 50 percent from its previous goal of 7.5 GW.
The governor’s new goal will generate enough offshore wind power to supply roughly 10 million homes for one year, and puts New Jersey on track to be the highest offshore wind power generating state in the East Coast. Only California, which recently adopted a goal of 25 gigawatts by 2045 has a larger offshore wind commitment.
Governor Murphy, announced his new offshore wind goal while speaking at an event in New York City for Climate Week, which members of Elected Officials to Protect America also attended.
“Elected Officials to Protect America New Jersey Chapter in a letter has garnered over 115 signatures from elected officials all across the state who solidly support responsible offshore wind development for the Garden State,” said Dominic Frongillo, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Elected Officials to Protect America. “This bold new goal solidifies New Jersey’s place as a national leader in renewable energy and demonstrates the Governor’s commitment to aggressively combat the climate crisis while recognizing the tremendous potential offshore wind can and will play.”
The Atlantic seaboard has the technical potential to produce more than four times of its current energy demand, and almost double the projected demand in 2050. New Jersey’s strong, consistent offshore wind and wide, shallow continental shelf enables economical deployment of offshore wind using existing technology.
“This announcement underscores the importance Governor Murphy has put on achieving his administration’s transition to a 100 percent clean-energy economy by 2050. He understands offshore wind is key to lowering energy costs, creating jobs, cleaning our air, helping to make environmental justice a reality and saving our planet from the worst devastation of climate disasters. I’m thankful for his bold leadership and hope other states capable of deploying offshore wind technologies will follow his lead.” Commissioner President Brendan Gill, Essex County, EOPA New Jersey Leadership Council.
At the same time, he announced the release of the Green Jobs for a Sustainable Future report, created by the New Jersey Council on the Green Economy in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Climate Action and the Green Economy. Governor Murphy directed the Council to prepare the report in order to promote diversity and opportunity in the green economy for environmental justice communities while making pathways to green jobs more accessible for workers, especially union members. The study projected the state can expect an additional 314,886 net jobs over the next 10 years based on current green policies and investment.
Governor Murphy also announced the release of an Offshore Wind jobs analysis.
“Governor Murphy’s exciting offshore wind increased goal puts New Jersey firmly on the road to transition to a 100 percent clean energy economy by 2050, and will ensure his administration’s clean energy goals are met. It’s a huge increase in clean electric energy that will help power our homes, cars and businesses while decreasing our greenhouse gas emissions which will save lives. This jump of nearly a 50 percent more offshore wind power should be the standard for more coastal states with offshore wind potential,” said Mayor Jim Maley, Jr. Collingswood Borough, EOPA New Jersey Leadership Council.
So far, New Jersey has approved building 3,700 MW to be generated by three projects off the New Jersey coast. The first wind farm is expected to be operating by mid-decade. The state has scheduled a third solicitation seeking to build 1,200 MW in the first quarter of 2023.
Nineteen of the 29 states with offshore wind potential have the technical capacity to produce more electricity from offshore wind than they used in 2019. And 11 of them have the technical capacity to produce more electricity than they would use in 2050 if the country electrified homes and commercial buildings, transportation and industry. The sheer size of the resource illustrates the critical contribution that offshore wind can make toward an energy system powered by 100 percent renewable energy.
Every year technological advances in the offshore wind sector are making wind turbines more and more efficient and economical.
Governor Murphy has been a strong leader in climate initiatives. He signed a groundbreaking environmental justice law in 2020 to protect vulnerable communities from pollution, returned New Jersey to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, increased New Jersey’s number of wind farms, and signed laws to boost solar energy and electric vehicles.