Public has opportunity for input on DEP strategic funding plan

Environment. A webinar workshop at 10 a.m. until noon on Thursday, Dec. 12 will enable the public to discuss funding priorities in their communities, ask questions about the funding process, and propose ideas.

26 Nov 2019 | 01:17

    The public has two remaining opportunities this year to provide input on how the state should distribute the revenue anticipated from New Jersey’s return to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), said Catherine R. McCabe. She's the Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner.

    The interactive workshops will give the public the opportunity to discuss funding priorities in their communities, ask questions about the RGGI funding process and propose ideas for investing RGGI auction proceeds. A scoping document, outlining the funding process and providing example funding initiatives, was released in late October to help educate the public ahead of the workshops. The document announces electrification and environmental justice as policy priorities for RGGI funds and explains the various regulatory and statutory requirements associated with the RGGI auction process.

    The upcoming workshops are from 1 to 4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6 at the West Park Recreation Center in Ocean Township, Ocean County; and via a webinar from 10 a.m. to noon Thursday, Dec. 12.

    Visit https://nj.gov/rggi/ to review the scoping document, learn more about each session and to register in advance.

    RGGI is the nation’s first multi-state, market-based cap-and-trade program designed to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil-fueled power plants generating 25 or more megawatts. RGGI participants allocate, award and transfer carbon allowances through an auction process as an annual carbon dioxide cap decline. The process encourages more market efficiencies, development of renewable energy, and technology improvements for power plants.

    Proceeds from the auctions are disbursed to states for a variety of programs that include energy efficiency assistance for consumers, renewable energy, greenhouse gas reduction and electricity bill assistance.