The goal of the 100% Project is that 100% of our Yearly Meeting’s buildings will be using 100% renewable electricity by our 2016 Annual Session. We know this is already happening in a number of our monthly meetings, and in a good many households as well. We are appealing to the rest of our monthly meetings, and to many more households, to choose to do likewise. How can we buy 100% renewable electricity in NJ? What made this option possible? Why is EJC asking this of us all?
How can this be done?
There are two 100% renewable suppliers in southern NJ: Community Energy, based in Radnor PA, offers 100% renewable (99% PJM wind, 1% NJ solar) for an additional 2.7 cents per kilowatt hour. This is simply added to what ACE or PSE&G currently bills for “supply,” which is about 12 cents per kwh. To learn about Community’s particulars, go to their website and enter your zip code. Sterling Planet, based near Atlanta GA, offers Renewable Energy Certificates for small, medium, and large homes on their website: https://www.communityenergyinc.com/ and https://www.sterlingplanet.com/ (For Sterling, go to Enroll and select Utility Programs and then select your distributor.)
What made this option possible?
In 1999, New Jersey’s electric industry began to be restructured so that customers can choose their electric supply company. Since then, there have been two distinct charges on all our electric bills: one for “Delivery” and one for “Supply.”
“Delivery” is your electric utility’s charge for transferring the amount of electricity you’ve used from the regional electric grid – the inter-connected network of high voltage transmission lines – to one of its distribution stations and then for distributing it to your meter. Your utility’s bill for delivery includes a service charge for maintaining its wires and transformers, paying for its use of the grid, reading your meter, sending you a bill, and all the administrative costs involved. These charges are regulated by the NJ Public Utility Commission.
“Supply” is what an “electric supply company” charges for generating the amount of electricity you’ve used and putting it into the grid. You can choose among a number of electric supply companies, either based on how much they charge, which is not regulated, or how their electricity is produced, which they must publicize. This is why you can buy 100% renewable electricity.
Both ACE and PSE&G are now “distribution companies” but each has a subsidiary that is a supply company. They are the “default” supplier for customers that do not switch to a different supplier. For those who do switch, the distribution company (i.e., your utility) bills its customers for the cost of generating the electricity they use, and transfers the payment to the supply company.
Why is EJC asking us all to pay a bit more for 100% renewable electricity?
Humanity is at a pivotal point in determining all our children’s future. The Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change held in December of 2015 in Paris declared that the guardrail for climate stability is to reduce our emissions and maintain a temperature increase of no more than 2 degrees Celsius. Let’s do our part!