October 20, 2023
We’ve heard reports of neighbors having community solar or third party energy sales representatives knocking on their doors to sign them up for a community solar project or a third party energy supplier (definition below). They may be mentioning Sustainable Princeton in their solicitation. You may also be receiving phone calls or solicitations in the mail. Here is what you need to know about community solar and third party energy suppliers.
- Community solar and third party energy providers are permitted in NJ — they offer a subscription or ownership to a “community solar” project and/or offer a “clean” electricity supply.
- While Sustainable Princeton supports the adoption of community solar and a competitive third party energy supply market, we currently do not endorse or have a partnership with a particular community solar company or third party energy supplier .
- You can check if a community solar project is legitimate by using the Community Solar Project Finder. Community solar projects registered with the NJ Board of Public Utilities (NJ BPU) will be listed and their expected dates of operation. The NJ BPU is a state-level government agency that regulates and oversees all utility-services..
- You can check if a third party energy supplier has an active license and registration with the NJ BPU here.
If you are unsure about a piece of mail you have received, have questions about community solar or third party energy supplier please call the office at 609-454-4757 or email email@example.com.
What is Community Solar?
A Community Solar project is a solar array whose energy generation is financially divided among multiple participating subscribers. These projects are located on warehouse rooftops, brownfields, or landfills that do not have use for all the energy generated. Instead, they can be used to benefit residents who do not have the option of solar such as renters, homeowners with shaded roofs, or anyone else who is not able to install solar. Using the NJ BPU Community Solar Project Finder you can put in your ZIP code and compare Community Solar projects that are in your utility territory. As a subscriber, you will receive a financial credit on your utility bill for the portion of power generated by the array on your behalf.
Community Solar Benefits
Community Solar provides benefits to subscribers, one of which is savings on your energy bill. Community Solar projects also help the state of New Jersey in the switch to cleaner energy. Although our organization supports Community Solar and encourages residents who cannot install solar on their own properties to subscribe to a project we do not currently endorse or have a partnership with a specific subscriber organization or solar developer.
What are Third Party Energy Suppliers?
Third party energy suppliers are alternative suppliers to the incumbent utility, which is PSE&G in Princeton, that sell electricity and gas to residential and business customers. These energy suppliers increase consumer choice and may be able to offer lower prices, more flexible agreements, or fixed rates, but not always. It is important to be a smart energy shopper as this market for individual contracts has emerged as a “buyer beware” marketplace where consumers should familiarize themselves with the rate and term details so as not to be surprised by variable energy rates, penalties and fees written into the contracts. Some third party energy suppliers describe their supply as sourced from renewable or clean energy. If you have questions about the validity of the clean energy claims, please call the office at 609-454-4757 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please use our Community Solar Fact Sheet to learn more and choose the best project for you. Also, check out the NJ BPU and Sustainable Jersey Community Solar Project Finder for direct comparisons of subscriber organizations.
PSE&G’s Electric and Gas Choice Customer Information provides a Price to Compare- Electric & Gas Webpage, FAQ, and more resources to help you shop for third party suppliers if you want to make that switch.