In New Jersey, Community Choice Aggregation is called Government Energy Aggregation ("GEA"). Plumstead Township was the first community to launch a GEA in New Jersey in 2012, followed by Toms River, Montgomery and Monroe Townships. Due to regulatory barriers, as of February, 2023, only one GEA program is active in New Jersey, whereas at least 131 communities have enabled GEA local law and actively aim to continue or start a program.
communities with Local CCA Authorization
active CCA community
inactive CCA communities
MWh of annual load (2022)
statewide population participants
3 to 24
Use this interactive map to explore CCA communities across New Jersey.
Use your mouse to zoom in and click on flags for more information.
Community Choice in the Garden State came into being in 1999 as part of the electricity deregulation movement. It was followed by a more specific Government Energy Aggregation Act in 2003, but an opt-in requirement and cost cap stymied the growth of GEAs. Subsequent legislation removed these barriers and the first GEA programs launched in 2012.
New Jersey’s experiment with opt-in aggregation demonstrated that CCAs really need to be designed as opt-out programs in order to succeed. Only with the automatic enrollment of all customers, except those who opt out, can a CCA reach the critical mass necessary to attract suppliers and succeed as a business.
Despite the rise of interest in GEA programs in the past years, the New Jersey GEA market is currently facing major challenges. Current market specialists note that they are unable to compete with the Price to Compare (“PTC”) rates. The Board of Public Utilities (“BPU”) requires GEA rates be lower than the PTC rate, unless the GEA rate includes more than 24.5% of class I and II renewable energy sources (a.k.a. the New Jersey minimum renewable energy requirement for 2022 and 2023), as per N.J.A.C 14:4-6.9. While this requirement may be seen as protective of customers, New Jersey regulators have unfortunately established a formula to calculate the PTC that, currently, GEAs are unable to compete with.
GEA consultants and advocacy groups have been working for many years to change the PTC formula as it is not reflective of the current market. Many New Jersey communities are waiting for the hedges to roll off in the next few years for competitors to join the market again and start a GEA program. According to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, 4 million electric customers are eligible for GEA in 2023 (NJBPU, 2023).
By law, CCA energy contracts in New Jersey cannot be longer than 24 months. GEA programs may offer REC opt-up options as part of their electricity supply contracts. The only active GEA community, the city of Hoboken, offers three types of product offerings:
Standard offering: state minimum renewable energy requirement (24.5%) + 10% renewable energy sources
Basic offering: state minimum renewable energy requirement (24.5%)
100% Green offering: 100% renewable energy sources
New Jersey's PTC (Price to Compare) formula, which active GEA programs need to to be lower than, equals the average standard utility rate from the past three energy auctions –there is one energy auction per year.
Currently, GEAs that offer a standard rate without enhanced renewable content, cannot compete with the PTC rate since the 2021 utility rates were much lower at the time and yet are still considered in the current PTC formula.
New aggregation programs are initiated by majority vote of the municipality’s elected body and must be approved by the Board of Public Utilities.
New Jersey allows automatic enrollment of residential customers, but it still requires commercial and municipal accounts to opt-in during a specified period.
CCA (a.k.a. GEA) PROGRAMS
ACES – Alliance for Competitive Energy Services (Purchases electricity and natural gas for 430 NJ school districts)
CCA-Enabling Legislation: AB 2165
INVESTOR OWNED UTILITIES
Haverhill Residents Not Receiving Discounted Electric Rate Have Another Chance to Enroll. whav.net, January 16, 2023
N.J. shakes up offshore wind industry with historic $1B plan. politicopro.com, October 27, 2022
Old Bridge voters to decide fate of clean energy program. mycentraljersey.com, October 26, 2022
tapinto.net/towns/franklin-township, October 3, 2022
As SOMA Returns to PSE&G for Electricity, Town Leaders Work to Find Cheaper Options. Village Green NJ, September 12, 2022
Morris Township Moves To Lower Energy Costs by Exploring Energy Aggregation & Natural Gas. Morristown Minute, September 4, 2022
South Orange & Maplewood Electric Bills Likely to Rise as Towns Return to PSE&G as Supplier. The Village Green, August 29, 2022
New pilot program will help residents save money and protect the environment. Essex News Daily, March 13, 2022