An energy consortium deal that was adopted earlier this week will bring about $150 in savings to the average South Orange household over the next year and a half.
That’s according to South Orange Trustee Walter Clarke, the Trustee liaison to the South Orange Environmental Commission. South Orange belongs to a consortium lead by Maplewood and including Verona, Glen Ridge, Montclair and Millburn.
Although Clarke promised “more details to come” (the agreement with Direct Energy begins in July), “the basic projection for South Orange is that the average household would see roughly a $150 a year savings on electricity which translates to $855,000 in savings town wide,” Clarke told Village Green.
“This is a win-win-win for our residents because it will not only provide cost savings on electricity, but also more than double the amount of renewable energy, and also offer an energy conservation piece as well,” Clarke continued, “I personally am very excited about this finally coming to fruition as I’ve been actively working on it with this group for over a year and working on the concept for several years. Locally, the Village President, Sheena Collum, has supported the effort since day one and Trustee Howard Levison and the Environmental Commission have been great assets and advocates. The working group from Maplewood, Montclair, Glen Ridge, Verona, and Millburn have all been great to collaborate with.”
Maplewood will recognize about $1,000,000 town wide over the 17-month contract or more than $140 per average household, Maplewood Mayor Victor DeLuca told Village Green. Millburn is the only town that has not reached a deal yet through the consortium, which is called Sustainable Essex Alliance Energy Procurement Cooperative — or SEAEPC.
“Hopefully this is just the beginning,” said Clarke. “As more towns see this model is successful the potential group purchasing power will only go up.”
Collum echoed Clarke: “This is the culmination of a process years in the making and a great example of cross border collaboration in service of the public. Representing over 120,000 New Jerseyans, leaders from 6 municipalities joined together and the result will be millions of dollars in energy savings across all of our communities. Thanks to Walter Clarke and Howard Levison for digging into the wonky details on behalf of South Orange and to our friends in Maplewood, Millburn, Montclair, Glen Ridge, and Verona for their combined leadership.”
Maplewood Mayor Vic DeLuca indicated that public education campaigns about the deal will be launched soon. Maplewood Green Team leader Tracey Woods indicated on the Village Green Facebook page that residents would automatically be enrolled in the new provider deal, but “Residents can opt out at anytime for no fee.”
Village Green will continue to follow this story.
Read more about SEAEPC here: