Former Gov. Florio Says Energy Master Plan Aims to Conserve

In New Jersey, the Energy Master Plan was created several years ago but was revised recently to help the state manage its energy use. Former Gov. Jim Florio told NJTV News Anchor Jack Ford that the plan was created to prepare the state for its future energy use.

“It’s an effort to try to think ahead, and be prepared for the future in terms of our energy needs,” said Florio.

Within the Energy Master Plan, a couple of components would have to change, according to Florio — the state would have to change over to wind and solar energy in order to get clean energy.

Though not many may be aware of the state’s Energy Master Plan, Florio said that he believes the public is paying attention to it because of cost. He also said that it’s disappointing that the state has lots of wind resources off shore and since the bill was passed authorizing the use of wind energy, nothing has occurred.

Florio believes that people are not as conservative as they should be with energy. People get concerned about cost and how energy can become more efficient but are not conserving it, he said.

Florio said that there is some legislation pending within the legislature to authorize a program for shore improvements.

The Pinelands Commission is considering a proposal for a 22-mile pipeline in Cape May County which would go through the Pinelands area. Florio said that the Pinelands is about 1 million acres and consists of environmentally fragile land. If the pipeline gets installed, Florio said that it would jeopardize the most fragile parts of the land.

“To break that treaty would be something that would be very dangerous,” said Florio. “It really doesn’t have to be done because we can have the same pipeline in a different trajectory cause once one of the most fragile part of the Pinelands, the forest areas, it might need a little more cost for the private company that’s going to benefit from this and the ultimate company is a power company that’s independently financed, but this can be done in a much more effective way getting all the benefits you talked about but also preserving the environment and our drinking water system.”