Aiming to boost adoption of clean energy alternatives and grow the market for fuel cells in New Jersey, legislation (A-741) to establish a 15-member task force within the Board of Public Utilities (BPU) on the use of fuel cell technologies received final legislative approval on Monday and now heads to the Governor’s desk.
Fuel cells facilitate the combining of hydrogen and oxygen to make water, and convert the chemical energy into electricity. The cells can be used in all-purpose generators as well as integrated with stationary machinery, specialty vehicles like forklifts, portable floodlights, and motor vehicles giving them broad applications.
Sponsors of the bill, Assembly Democrats Gordon Johnson (D-Bergen), Herb Conaway (D-Burlington) and Andrew Zwicker (D-Somerset, Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon) released the following joint statement:
“As the applications of fuel cell technology continue to grow, we are looking at an ever-increasing capacity to shift away from fossil fuels and toward better, cleaner power sources. By creating a central task force comprised of cross-sector experts, this measure takes the first step in accelerating New Jersey’s implementation of fuel cell technologies.
“Engaging State departments, local government, industry and the public on the topic of fuel cells, the task force would be largely beneficial in helping develop policy recommendations and a course of regulatory action. If we plan to make New Jersey’s goal of 100 percent clean energy by 2050 a reality, keeping at pace with innovations and integrating clean energy technologies will be critical.”
The bill passed the Assembly 79-0-0 on February 24 and the Senate 39-0 on June 15.