New Jersey golf courses to open as state’s first statewide solar courses
New Jersey Gov.
Chris Christie said on Friday that his state’s solar courses are set to open by the end of this year and could become the first statewide courses in the country.
The governor said the courses, which he described as being about 50 percent solar energy, will provide up to 5 percent of the state’s electricity by 2030.
Christie said he plans to invite interested parties to join the project.
“The solar courses will provide New Jerseyans with a way to get around on the grid, to have access to the electricity that we can’t have here,” Christie said in an interview on ABC News’ “This Week.”
Christie said the project is “the culmination of years of work” and will help New Jersey cut its reliance on coal and generate more renewable energy.
The solar courses, designed by the New Jersey Solar Energy Center and the New York-based Clean Energy Institute, are expected to cost $1.4 million and will take about four years to build, according to a statement from the governor’s office.
Christie did not specify the types of energy sources that will be powering the solar courses.
But in a previous statement, the governor said he is working to find an energy source that will generate enough electricity to power the state, which is estimated to need about 200,000 megawatts of electricity by 2040.
Christie, who has also said the state will become the nation’s third-largest solar state by 2050, is a strong supporter of the Clean Power Plan, which requires states to reduce their carbon emissions and boost renewable energy production.
Under the Clean Energy Act, the state of New Jersey is required to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, and by 2035 it is required by law to produce 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources.
Christie signed the Clean and Safe Energy Act into law in January.
Earlier this year, the Clean Air Task Force, an independent environmental advocacy group, urged the governor to take action on climate change.
“There are so many ways to deal with climate change, from renewable energy to building more energy-efficient buildings,” said Lisa Brown, executive director of the task force.
“New Jerseyans can take a stand to protect our air, our water and our climate.”
The Clean Energy Council, which advocates for energy efficiency and renewable energy, also criticized Christie for signing the Clean power Plan without consulting with the task group.
“If you’re the governor of New York, it’s clear that you’re not a climate scientist, and that’s not good enough for you,” said Brian McNeal, the council’s vice president for energy and climate policy.
“He’s not a scientist.
He’s just an elected official, and he should have consulted with the climate science community.”
Christie, in an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” said the CleanPower Plan is part of a larger problem that he sees affecting the country and that is the lack of investment in energy efficiency, renewable energy and building more homes.
“I think the idea of having people building their own homes, putting them in their own communities, and having a climate policy that will help them with that, that’s really what’s driving us into this situation,” he said.