Questions & Answers

Q:    What is the North Bergen Liberty Generating (NBLG) project?

A:    The NBLG project is a 1,200 megawatt, natural gas-fired electric generating facility proposed for an industrially-zoned site in North Bergen, New Jersey. NBLG will provide much needed power where the region needs it the most — Manhattan. The facility will be among the cleanest, most efficient generating plants of its kind in the region, and will reduce the region’s reliance on older, less efficient power plants with considerably higher emissions.

Q:   What are the benefits of NBLG to the region?

A:    The NBLG project is 34% more efficient than the average power plant serving the NYC area today.  Being more efficient means burning less natural gas to make the same amount of electricity.  It also means less CO2, NOX, and SO2 will be emitted into the region because reliance on electric generation plants that burn significantly dirtier fossil fuels, such as oil and coal, will diminish.  The project also will use reclaimed water in its operations and send its recycled water back to a local utility authority for treatment.

NBLG will also provide millions of dollars in annual taxes to the host municipality of North Bergen and the State of New Jersey, and provide over 620 high-paying construction jobs, as well as fulltime operating and maintenance jobs.

Q:   Will there be any noise concerns for surrounding neighborhoods?

A:    The plant will be designed to comply with all state and local noise regulations and will have minimal to no impact on noise levels in the area. Given the industrial nature of the area around the site, it is highly unlikely that there will be any noticeable noise variation during construction – however, the project will still utilize normal noise abatement methods to ensure this is the case.

Q:   Will jobs be created in New Jersey?

A:    Project construction will result over 620 construction workers working full-time for three years to construct both the project’s combined-cycle facility and associated electric, natural gas, and reclaimed water interconnections within New Jersey.  To put this in context, 620 annual construction workers represent approximately 13% of total Construction Sector jobs in Hudson County in 2015.  When considering direct, indirect, and induced employment, the project is estimated to provide over 1,000 jobs a year during the three-year construction period.

During project operation, the facility will employ many full- and part-time workers who will operate and maintain the plant.

Q:   Will there be any construction traffic?

A:    Primary construction access is likely to be from Fairview Ave via 95th street. Improvements will be made to the proposed entrance on Fairview Ave to allow for construction access and permanent entrance to the facility. A secondary entrance will be maintained through 94th street. The necessary traffic studies will be performed to quantify traffic flow during peak periods and determine impact, if any, to the nearby areas.

Q:   What type of construction equipment will be used at the site?

A:    Equipment will be typical of construction work and will include excavation equipment (such as track-hoes, front-end loaders and back-hoes), off-road forklifts, man-lifts, small diesel generators, delivery trucks, 10-wheel dump trucks, semi-tractor trucks, cranes, cement trucks, and construction crew support trucks. Oversized loads will be delivered on multiple axel trucks. If construction were to occur after dark, portable, diesel powered construction lights would be provided. Rail deliveries for heavy equipment will also be considered.

Q:   What air quality measures will be in place?

A:    NBLG emissions will comply with the requirements of the federal Clean Air Act and its implementing EPA regulations, as well as all New Jersey clean air regulations.  The facility is being designed to include highly efficient pollution control measures that will clean the exhaust air from the turbines prior to discharge through the stacks to the atmosphere.  These measures include use of clean burning natural gas with ultra-low sulfur distillate fuel as a backup fuel, pollution reduction features incorporated into the design of the combustion turbines themselves, and catalytic pollution removal systems that clean the turbine exhaust before it is emitted from the stack.  This combination of controls is classified as meeting “Lowest Achievable Emission Rate” requirements for the pollutants associated with high summertime ozone levels in the region and “Best Available Control Technology” for other pollutants.

Q: Why don’t we just use solar panels or windmills to generate electricity for the region?

A: NBLG is proposed in light of a stated need for additional generating capacity to serve New York City and the surrounding regions.  While renewable energy sources are becoming an increasingly important component of the generation mix required to operate the electric grid, the use of renewable energy to meet system demands within the New York City area is currently limited by transmission constraints within the NYISO electric transmission system and the scale of existing land use development within New York City and the surrounding region.  Transmission constraints limit the availability to import power from upstate while the limited availability of real estate within the densely developed New York City area prohibits the development of utility-scale renewable generation. In the NY Metro area, solar generation requires roughly four acres to produce one MW of electricity.  It would take a solar array almost six times as large as Central Park to produce enough energy as the proposed NBLG facility.  Conversely, to build a wind farm capable of generating 1,200 megawatts for electricity would require an area the size of Bergen and Hudson Counties COMBINED.

Q:  What will NBLG do to offset its GHG emissions?
A:  If New Jersey joins the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) prior to the NBLG project coming online, NBLG will participate in RGGI and will be required to hold credits (or “allowances”) for the GHG emissions that the electric generating units emit. These would offset 100% of the project’s GHG emissions.  If New Jersey has not joined RGGI by the time NBLG is operational, then NBLG will seek to participate voluntarily in environmental programs that will offset the plant’s GHG emissions, until New Jersey joins RGGI.  NBLG currently is reviewing existing environmental programs which would enable it to invest proceeds from plant operations to offset its GHG emissions.