He added that transmission capacity running from Pennsylvania into New Jersey is maxed out. If Pennsylvania's power did indeed become cheaper, energy companies would have to build more transmission lines, during which time energy prices in RGGI states would continue to fall.
"The way the program was designed was to auction pollution permits and use that money to invest in energy efficiency programs that would reduce the total bills for folks. By reducing energy consumption as a whole, it would actually reduce energy prices," he said.
"The less energy that you buy, the less the clearing prices for [wholesale] energy in the state."
RGGI Proceeds Could Support Gov.'s Goals
Martinez noted that proceeds from RGGI would support Christie's clean energy platform by offering financing for offshore wind development, solar energy installations and green manufacturing.
Pat Rose of the said in an e-mail that the six projects receiving $12.3 million in loans from CESCI funding are expected to leverage more than $30.2 million in public-private investment and lead to the creation of 50 permanent jobs and 39 construction jobs.
Among those projects is a 3.5-megawatt solar facility for William Paterson University in Wayne. The project, which Rose said is being called the largest university solar facility nationwide, is expected to save $4.3 million in energy costs over the next 15 years.
Martinez said: "When the governor sits down to look at [RGGI], he'll see that it matches very well with what he wants to do on clean energy."