Author: Susanne Peticolas

Aquaponics Firm Wins 2013 Cleantech Open Global Ideas Award

ECF Farm Systems, a German company pioneering turnkey containerized fish and vegetable farming units for urban areas, won the prestigious Cleantech Open Global Ideas Award for 2013. Cleantech is the world’s largest clean technology accelerator. Often called the “Academy Award” of clean technology, the Global Ideas competition, in its fifth year, attracts early-stage start-ups with cutting edge clean technology ideas from around the world. The competitors are the national winners of the competitions in their own countries. ECF Farm Systems was selected from 28 finalists.

NJ BPU Proposes Amendments to Regulations Affecting Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

On August 6, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) announced proposed amendments to multiple sections of the regulations governing renewable energy and energy efficiency. The amendments will affect New Jersey’s renewable portfolio standards, class II renewable energy certifications (RECs) and net metering. These proposed amendments come a few weeks after Governor Christie signed S-1925 into law on July 24, 2012, increasing the state’s solar requirements, and giving what is expected to be a boost to the solar energy business in the state.

NJ’s First Off-Shore Wind Project Gets Final Regulatory Approval

While developers and investors were celebrating the boost to the solar energy business when Governor Christie signed S-1925 into law on July 24, 2012, increasing the state’s solar requirements, the off-shore wind sector received a boost when the US Army Corps of Engineers approved the Individual Permit under the Clean Water Act for Fishermen’s Atlantic City Windfarm. This is the final permit needed in order for Fishermen’s Energy to begin construction of the demonstration project.

USEPA Grants Technical Assistance to Coopers Ferry Partnership to Study SMART Initiative in Camden, N.J.

On July 19, 2012, Coopers Ferry Partnership was one of 17 community partners selected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) to receive technical assistance as part of its 2011 strategic agenda to renew support for green infrastructure and promote its effective implementation. The Coopers Ferry Partnership will receive $70,000 to advance projects aimed at reducing water pollution in Camden, New Jersey.

US EPA Issues National Standards for Mercury Pollution from Power Plants

On December 21, 2011, the United State Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it had issued the first ever national standards for mercury emissions and other air pollutants from power plants. The regulations were mandated by the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments. EPA estimates that the new standards will make a major contribution to public health by preventing 11,000 premature deaths and 4,700 heart attacks annually, as well as 130,000 cases of childhood asthma symptoms and about 6,300 cases of acute bronchitis among children each year.

Nissan Leaf EV Expected to be Available Nationwide in Early 2012

The all electric Nissan Leaf is now available in seven new states, bringing the total to 30, including New Jersey, where it is sold. The additional states are Delaware, Indiana, Louisiana, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. This is good news for Delaware, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island, which are members of the Transportation and Climate Initiative planning for an Electric Vehicle (EV) Network across the Northeast.

NJDEP to Issue Draft Remedial Priority Scores for Contaminated Sites

In the next few weeks, responsible parties for some 12,000 known contaminated sites in New Jersey will be receiving a letter with a draft Remedial Priority Score (RPS) for their particular site compliments of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP). The NJDEP has not specified how the rankings will be used, although the RPS system has been described by the NJDEP as “a triage tool to sort sites for further consideration.”

NJ Charges Forward with Electric Vehicle Network

On October 20, 2011, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin announced that New Jersey signed an agreement with other states and the District of Columbia to develop a Northeast Electric Vehicle Network and promote alternative transportation fuels. This announcement comes less than one month after New Jersey, along with the other members of the Transportation and Climate Initiative, received a federal grant of nearly $1 million to start planning a network of charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs). The goal of the Network is to bolster economic growth, maintain the region’s leadership in the clean energy economy and reduce the area’s dependence on oil and its emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.

Electric Vehicles Get a Jump Start in the Northeast

Today New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin announced that New Jersey, along with the other members of the Transportation and Climate Initiative, have received a federal grant of nearly $1 million to start planning a network of charging stations for electric vehicles. The initiative is expected to spur job creation and the use of electric vehicles (EVs).

EPA Issues Final Chemical Data Reporting Rule

On August 16, 2011, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) issued its final rule on chemical reporting which will apply to the next reporting period running from February 1, 2012 through June 30, 2012. Adopted pursuant to section 8(a) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the rule increases the type and amount of information USEPA will collect on commercial chemicals from chemical manufacturers, including importers, allowing USEPA to better identify and publish information on the manufacturing, processing, and use of commercial chemical substances and mixtures on the TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory (TSCA Inventory).