PSE&G is installing about 5,000 to 7,000 solar panels on utility poles around Hudson County as part of its Solar 4 All program, officials said.

The local solar panels are part of a statewide plan to install more than 200,000 panels throughout more than 250 municipalities across New Jersey.

Bayonne was first in Hudson County to get the solar panels.

“The solar panel is connected directly into the grid,” explained PSE&G spokesman Fran Sullivan. “It doesn’t power a light. It benefits all electric users.”

PSE&G electric customers pay for the power they use, therefore the panels are a way of introducing solar energy into the mix of power that they pay for, providing all the customers with universal access to solar power.

“The solar power provides a renewable, carbon emission-free way to produce electricity,” Sullivan said.

The solar panels, individually, will produce about 200 watts of energy from the sun’s rays, Sullivan said. All the panels around the state will produce 80 megawatts when the installations are complete next year, enough electricity for about 12,000 homes for a year.

The installations are part of PSE&G’s $515 million Solar 4 All program that was approved by the Board of Public Utilities in July 2009. According to Sullivan, the cost of the program to a residential PSE&G customer is about 10 cents per month. Individual municipalities and counties have no costs directly associated with Solar 4 All, he said.

The solar panel units are 5-feet wide and 2.5-feet high and are mounted on utility poles more than 15 feet above the ground.

PSE&G did not know when the installation of the panels in Hudson County would be completed.

source: nj