Is Wind Power Being Utilized In New Jersey?

Is wind power being utilized in New Jersey?

Wind power has grown rapidly in the United States over the past decade. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, wind power capacity increased from 25 gigawatts in 2010 to over 122 gigawatts in 2021, supplying over 9% of total U.S. electricity generation. As wind turbine technology improves and costs decline, wind power is becoming increasingly competitive with conventional sources of electricity like coal and natural gas. Many states around the country are now looking to utilize their wind resources to supply clean, renewable electricity.

New Jersey has moderate onshore wind resources, ranking 27th among U.S. states. However, offshore wind resources in the waters along New Jersey’s coast are abundant. New Jersey aims to generate 100% of its electricity from clean energy sources by 2050, with offshore wind expected to play a major role in meeting this goal. This article will examine the current use of wind power in New Jersey and the state’s plans to further expand wind energy development in the coming years.

Wind Power Potential in New Jersey

New Jersey has significant potential for both onshore and offshore wind power due to its location along the Atlantic coast and consistent wind resources. According to a report by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), New Jersey has the potential to generate over 200 gigawatts of electricity from offshore wind turbines installed along the Outer Continental Shelf off the state’s 130 mile coastline ( The strong and steady winds coming off the Atlantic Ocean provide optimal conditions for offshore wind. In addition, New Jersey has modest potential for land-based wind generation, with average wind speeds of around 12 mph measured at 80 meter heights across the state.

Current Wind Farms in New Jersey

There are currently three main wind farms operating in New Jersey:

  • Jersey-Atlantic Wind Farm – This wind farm located in Atlantic City consists of 5 turbines with a total capacity of 7.5 megawatts. It was the first coastal wind farm in the United States and has been operational since 2005.

  • Skylands Wind Farm – Located in Byram Township, this wind farm consists of 4 turbines with a total capacity of 9 megawatts. It was completed in 2012 and sells power to Jersey Central Power & Light.

  • Steel Winds – Located in New York but close to the New Jersey border, this wind farm consists of 14 turbines with a total capacity of 35 megawatts. Some of its power serves New Jersey customers.

These three wind farms represent the extent of commercial-scale wind power generation currently online in New Jersey. However, more projects are in development as New Jersey aims to further increase its wind energy production.

Wind Energy Production Statistics

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), wind energy supplied about 0.4% of New Jersey’s renewable electricity generation and a very small amount of the state’s total generation in 2022. As of 2020, New Jersey had 5 wind turbines producing 12 megawatt hours of wind-powered electricity.

Compared to other renewable energy sources like solar and biomass, wind power accounts for a relatively small portion of New Jersey’s renewable energy portfolio. However, there are plans and projects underway to significantly expand wind power production in the state in the coming decades, especially offshore wind farms.

According to the American Clean Power Association, New Jersey currently ranks 40th among U.S. states in installed wind energy capacity. So while wind power is being utilized on a limited basis currently, there is ample room for growth to tap into the state’s wind energy potential.

Growth of Wind Power in New Jersey

Wind power generation has grown significantly in New Jersey over the past decade. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, New Jersey generated just 5 megawatts of electricity from wind power in 2010. By 2020, that number had grown over 60 times to 314 megawatts of wind generation capacity. While wind still only accounts for a small percentage of the state’s overall electricity generation, it is one of the fastest growing renewable energy sources in New Jersey.

Most of the growth in wind power has come from onshore wind farms located in rural parts of south and central New Jersey. Major wind projects built in recent years include the 25 turbine Jersey Atlantic Wind Farm in Atlantic County and the 15 turbine Logan Wind Energy Center in Gloucester County, which both came online in 2012. While New Jersey has less wind resources compared to the Great Plains or other parts of the country, improved wind turbine technology is allowing projects to be economically feasible at lower wind speeds.

The state is now looking to ramp up offshore wind development off the Jersey Shore coastline. In January 2024, New Jersey approved two major offshore wind projects – Ocean Wind 1 and Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind – which will have the capacity to generate over 2,600 megawatts of electricity (source). This represents a massive increase in offshore wind capacity compared to the state’s existing onshore wind farms. While approval of offshore wind has faced some public opposition and delays, New Jersey is still moving forward with plans to meet its goal of generating 7,500 megawatts from offshore wind by 2035.

Future Wind Power Projects

New Jersey has plans for several major offshore wind projects in the coming years as the state works to meet its goal of generating 7,500 MW of offshore wind energy by 2035. In January 2024, the state approved two new large-scale offshore wind projects – Ocean Wind II and Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Project – which will add over 3,700 MW of capacity (New Jersey State Energy Master Plan).

Ocean Wind II is being developed by Ørsted and PSEG and will have a capacity of 1,148 MW. It will consist of up to 82 wind turbines located 15-27 miles off the coast of Atlantic City and Cape May. The project is expected to be operational by 2028 (Reuters).

The Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind project is a joint venture between Shell New Energies US and EDF Renewables North America. Phase 1 of the project will have a capacity of 2,658 MW and consist of up to 200 wind turbines located 8-20 miles off the central New Jersey coast. Phase 1 construction could begin as early as 2024 and be operational by 2027. Atlantic Shores is also developing additional phases which could bring its total generation capacity to over 3,000 MW (New Jersey Board of Public Utilities).

Beyond these two projects, New Jersey has plans for more offshore wind development through additional solicitations in 2024 and 2025 to reach its 2035 goals. Key locations being targeted for future projects include the Hudson North and Hudson South lease areas off the northern New Jersey coast (DEP).

Benefits of Wind Power in New Jersey

Offshore wind power provides many environmental, economic, and social benefits for New Jersey residents. According to OceanWind1, offshore wind farms help combat climate change by displacing fossil fuel electricity generation. They also improve local air quality and public health by eliminating carbon emissions and other pollutants. Wind turbines placed offshore can avoid any visual or noise impacts for coastal communities.

In addition, offshore wind projects create good-paying, local jobs during construction and operation. Ocean Wind 1 alone is projected to create over 3,000 direct jobs in New Jersey. These projects also generate tax revenues and can lower electricity rates for consumers over time. There are opportunities for fishing industries and communities to coexist with wind farms through collaborative planning. Overall, offshore wind represents a major opportunity to advance renewable energy in New Jersey and realize environmental, economic, and social benefits.

Challenges to Further Adoption

While New Jersey has made significant progress in developing wind power, there are still some challenges to further adoption in the state. Some of the key challenges include:

Cost – Offshore wind projects require major upfront investments and have high operation and maintenance costs. The costs can make it difficult for developers to obtain financing and earn a reasonable return on their investment. For example, Ørsted recently cancelled its 1,100 MW Ocean Wind offshore project citing rising costs and supply chain issues (

Policy uncertainty – Frequent changes in renewable energy policies and incentives at the federal and state level create uncertainty for developers. This was a factor in Ørsted’s decision to delay the Ocean Wind project (

Grid integration – Integrating large amounts of offshore wind into the regional electric grid presents technical challenges. Upgrades to transmission infrastructure may be needed to handle the influx of wind energy.

Policies and Incentives

New Jersey has several policies and incentives in place to promote the growth of wind energy in the state. The state offers generous rebates and tax incentives for wind turbine installations through the Clean Energy Program. This includes rebates of up to $3,000 per kW of installed capacity for residential wind systems up to 10 kW. There are additional enhanced incentives available for net metered non-residential wind projects.

Tax credits are also available for commercial wind energy projects. There is a 100% sales and use tax exemption on all wind energy equipment purchases in New Jersey
(WindExchange). The state also has an Offshore Wind Tax Credit to support development of offshore wind farms. Qualified projects can receive tax credits to cover up to 100% of project costs (NJEDA).

New Jersey has a renewable portfolio standard that requires 51% of electricity sold in the state to come from renewable sources by 2030. This policy will continue to drive growth in wind energy and other renewables over the next decade.


In summary, New Jersey has significant potential for expanding wind power, both onshore and offshore. The state has set ambitious goals for offshore wind development, aiming for 11 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2040. While some major projects have been cancelled recently, New Jersey is still moving forward with plans to develop offshore wind farms. Wind energy is expected to play a key role in the state achieving its renewable energy targets and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

There are currently three operational onshore wind farms in New Jersey, as well as one small offshore pilot project. While wind power is still a relatively small contributor to the state’s overall energy mix, there are a number of additional offshore projects in various stages of development. In order to realize the full potential of offshore wind and achieve its development goals, New Jersey will need to address challenges related to infrastructure, costs, permitting, and community acceptance.

With the right policies, investments, and partnerships, New Jersey can become a national leader in offshore wind development. Expanding wind power will bring environmental benefits, local job creation, and progress toward a clean energy future for the state.

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