Climate Change


2020 New Jersey Global Warming Response Act 80x50 Report

The GWRA 80x50 Report was written in response to the mandate in the Global Warming Response Act, to reduce New Jersey's greenhouse gas emissions by 80% from their 2006 levels by 2050. This report builds on the State’s previous efforts to address and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and serves as the third element of a comprehensive plan that evaluates New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions from both energy and non-energy systems, providing guidance, policies, and regulatory and legislative recommendations to meet the State’s GHG emission reduction goals.

Final 2020 New Jersey Mitigation Report on Climate Change

Governor Murphy has set an agenda that enhances and expands already existing programs that advance renewable energy, improve energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, prepare the state for the impacts of climate change, and establishes a path forward to ensure New Jersey achieves its greenhouse gas emissions targets while improving resiliency for all communities throughout the State.


New Jersey Climate Goals


US Climate Alliance - On February 21, 2018, Governor Murphy signed P.L. 2018, c.3, requiring New Jersey to join the US Climate Alliance, a bipartisan coalition of US states committed to uphold the United Nations’ Paris Climate Accord despite the federal government’s decision to withdrawal. On the one-year anniversary of the US’s withdrawal, the Climate Alliance committed to several new actions, including cuts in short-lived climate pollutants such as methane and black carbon, and financing for clean energy.

Global Warming Response Act — Legislation requiring a reduction New Jersey’s economy-wide Greenhouse Gas emissions to 80% below 2006 levels by 2050.


Statewide Energy Planning


Community Solar Pilot Program — Board of Public Utilities, with support from the Department of Environmental Protection, is currently developing a program to enable utility customers to participate in a solar energy project that is remotely located from their property.

Drive Green New Jersey — Designed to educate the public about the benefits of electric vehicles while dispelling myths, and highlight incentives to advance investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure throughout New Jersey, such as the “It Pay$ to Plug-In” Workplace Charging Grant Program.

New Jersey Greenhouse Emissions Inventory — The latest Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Report for 2015 covers statewide emissions for the years 2013, 2014, and 2015.

New Jersey Energy Master Plan — In May of 2018, Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order #28 directing the development of a new Energy Master Plan that will serve as a comprehensive blueprint for the total conversion (100%) of the State’s energy production to clean energy sources by 2050.

Offshore Wind — In January of 2018, Governor Phil Murphy Signed Executive Order #8 directing all New Jersey State Agencies with responsibilities under the Offshore Wind Economic Development Act (OWEDA) to fully implement OWEDA in order to meet a goal of obtaining 3,500 MW from offshore wind by the year 2030.

Renewable Portfolio Standard Requires each electricity supplier serving retail customers in the State to procure 35% of the electricity it sells in New Jersey from qualified renewable energy resources by 2025 and 50% by 2030. Also includes a solar requirement of 5.1% by 2021.

Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) — A multi-state, market-based program that establishes a regional cap on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from electric power generating facilities. Proceeds from the program support the greenhouse gas reduction efforts and incentivize the adoption of clean and renewable energy in the state.

Solar Siting Analysis Update — State-level guidance on siting solar Photovoltaic (PV) projects based on land use/land cover, including a screening tool for site specific information.

Transportation and Climate Initiative — New Jersey has committed to working with Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states in designing a new regional low-carbon transportation policy proposal that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector.

Visit New Jersey’s Clean Energy Picture to learn more about Clean Energy in New Jersey


Energy Efficiency


Energy Efficiency Program — Requires electric public utilities to achieve annual reductions in the use of electricity of 2% of the average annual usage in the prior three years within five years of implementation of its electric energy efficiency program. Also requires natural gas public utilities to achieve annual reductions in the use of natural gas of 0.75% of the average annual usage in the prior three years within five years of implementation of its gas energy efficiency program.

New Jersey Clean Energy Program — Statewide program that offers financial incentives, programs and services for New Jersey residents, business owners and local governments to help them save energy, money and the environment.


Resiliency


Beach Nourishment – New Jersey's unique geography places the State in the potential path of hurricanes, tropical storms and nor'easters. Healthy beaches provide mitigation from these natural disasters by acting as a buffer between the pounding surf and the homes, businesses and infrastructure along the coast. The Bureau of Coastal Engineering, in cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, provides beach nourishment and re-nourishment (pdf) projects for the purpose of restoring New Jersey's beaches along our coastline.

Blue Acres — State acquisition of properties that have been damaged by, or may be prone to incurring damage caused by, storms or storm-related flooding, or that may buffer or protect other lands from such damage.

Coastal Management Program – A primary mission of the Program is ensuring that coastal resources and ecosystems are conserved as a vital aspect of local, state, and federal efforts to enhance sustainable coastal communities. A network of offices within the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection that serve distinct functions yet share responsibilities that influence the state of New Jersey's coast.

Coastal Resilience Plan — The DEP is developing a Coastal Resilience Plan and tools to evaluate how its policies and programs allow for local, regional and state response to climate change within the coastal zone.

Ecological Solutions and Living Shoreline Projects – New Jersey has over 1,700 miles of ocean and other tidal water coastline. These coastlines are subject to erosion and sea level change and through that to loss of land, fresh water wetlands, salt marsh, habitat and critical species. When properly designed, living shorelines have been proven to be an effective response to these conditions and frequently more beneficial than hard structure responses, such as bulkheads.

Emergency Debris Planning and Management – Past natural disasters, such as Hurricane Irene and Superstorm Sandy, showed the need for counties, municipalities, and regulated facilities to plan for debris management. A key lesson learned from these events is that immediate response to debris collection and disposal is essential to a community’s swift recovery from a disaster. This information center was designed to assist counties and municipalities in preparing for the next debris generating event.

Energy Storage — New Jersey’s goal is to achieve 600 MW of energy storage by 2021 and 2,000 MW by 2030.

NY & NJ Harbor & Tributaries Focus Area Feasibility Study (HATS) – In addition to the NJBB Study, the DEP also partnered with USACE in 2016 on the Harbor and Tributaries Focus Area Feasibility Study (HATS). Like NJBB, the HATS Study also developed out of the larger North Atlantic Coast Comprehensive Study. The HATS Study will include the examination of damages in coastal and tidal areas (north of the NJBB study area) due to coastal storms such as hurricanes “and of possible means of preventing loss of human lives and damages to property, with due consideration of the economics of proposed breakwaters, seawalls, dikes, dams, and other structures, warning services, or other measures which might be required.”

New Jersey Back Bays Coastal Storm Risk Management Study – An investigative study on Coastal Storm Risk Management (CSRM) strategies and solutions to reduce damages from coastal flooding affecting population, critical infrastructure, critical facilities, property, and ecosystems in New Jersey. A full array of structural, non-structural, and natural and nature-based measures will be considered. This study area is located behind the barrier islands of Monmouth, Ocean, Burlington, Atlantic and Cape May Counties and includes the set of interconnected water bodies and coastal lakes that are separated from the Atlantic Ocean.

New Jersey FRAMES — A multi-partner planning initiative within the Two Rivers region of Monmouth County working with 15 communities surrounding the Navesink and Shrewsbury rivers to develop a regional plan to address the impacts of increasing coastal hazards and storm surge.

Petroleum Emergency Toolkit — Tool to support government management planning and response personnel in emergencies affecting the petroleum supply chain.

Rebuild By Design – Hudson River – A comprehensive urban floodwater management strategy to reduce the flood risk from storm surge and rainfall events. The project area includes the City of Hoboken and adjacent areas in Weehawken and Jersey City. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded $230 million to the State for the RBDH project, which includes the design and environmental impact analysis of an overall comprehensive flood reduction master plan within the project area. The project includes funding for the construction of the river storm surge resist components of the project.

Rebuild By Design – Meadowlands - A flood reduction strategy for the Boroughs of Little Ferry, Moonachie, Carlstadt and Teterboro and the Township of South Hackensack. The project includes the construction of flood risk reduction measures designed to address the impacts of inland flooding. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded $150 million to the State for the RBDM project. This project will include channel dredging, a new force main, pump stations, new and improved open spaces, and green infrastructure systems.

Resilient NJ — Program to assist the multi-municipal regions most impacted by Superstorm Sandy in identifying and addressing vulnerabilities to increased coastal and riverine flood risk and other climate stressors.

Shore Protection Program – The Division of Coastal Engineering is responsible for administering beach nourishment and shore protection projects throughout the state in conjunction with various federal, state, and local partners. Since Superstorm Sandy, the Division of Coastal Engineering has been tasked with working with the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) to manage $1.5 billion in federal post-Sandy projects along the New Jersey coast.


Natural Resources


Climate Change Summary for the NJ Wildlife Action Plan (pdf)

Wildlife Habitat Connectivity — Wildlife need to be able to move through the landscape to find food, shelter, mates, and other resources. With the changing climate, wildlife will also need to move in response to rising sea levels and shifting habitats. CHANJ is an effort to make New Jersey’s landscape and roadways more permeable to wildlife movement.