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The Board of Public Utilities of New Jersey has unanimously approved an offshore wind competitive grant solicitation with up to $19 million in funding to support the financing and development of an offshore wind pilot.

As part of this funding, the board will provide up to 10% of the total incentive up front to help conduct the needed studies and prepare needed permit applications.

The successful grant will build an aggregate capacity of up to 350 MW of offshore renewable wind electricity, the board says. Criteria to be considered in the awarding of the grant include: location in the study area from the Department of Environmental Protection's ecological baseline study, extending 20 miles offshore from Seaside Park to Stone Harbor; the applicant's ability to assist in relieving or reducing congestion in the distribution system and the PJM Interconnection transmission system; and the applicant's demonstration of ability to finance construction through market sources.

The board will accept proposals for funding up to and including Jan. 16, 2008, with the award projected for March 2008.

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