Aside from the recent news of more offshore wind farms for New Jersey, the Garden State is becoming even greener with the launch of a new loan/grant called the Edison Innovation Green Growth Fund (EIGGF). The loan will be used to assist growing clean tech companies in state.
The EIGGF is funded by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) and offers loans along with a performance grant of up to $1 million to eligible businesses. Participating businesses must be a class I renewable or energy efficiency company that is already generating commercial revenue and seeking matching funding for their clean technology growth. Valid energy efficiency equipment and technology are those that reduce consumption of electricity and gas like LEDs, improved efficiency furnaces and boilers. Suitable renewable energy companies include photovoltaic technology, sustainable harvest biomass, wind energy, renewable fuel cells and renewable generated hydrogen.
Positive performances of these businesses could mean that nearly 50 percent of their loan could be converted to a performance grant. The loans have a fixed interest rate for five years and are determined by the risk factors of the companies. Aside from providing help for the companies, the EIGGF could also help ratepayers in the long run. According to BPU president Lee Solomon “the EIGGF program contributes a host of tangible benefits to New Jersey ratepayers, including greater access to renewable energy and energy efficiency products, support of well paying jobs here in New Jersey, and a range of environmental benefits.”
The EIGGF was launched in response to demand for a companion program to the State’s Clean Energy Manufacturing Fund (CEMF) for those companies lacking growth capital. For New Jersey, the situation appears to be a win-win. Not only will there be more jobs available, this funding will help decrease the cost for these manufacturers, which will hopefully translate back to the ratepayers.