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  • Environmental Groups, Homeowners Sue NJDEP For Approving Massive Dredge Spoil Pile within the Barnegat Bay & Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge Ecosystem | Environment New Jersey
    NIMBY complaint said Bill Potter the lead attorney on the case referring to the acronym for Not in My Backyard This case raises critical issues as to whether DEP is carrying out its mission to protect the coastal environment Among the environmental laws DEP violated is the Coastal Area Facility Review Act CAFRA which requires project applicants to submit detailed Environmental Impact Statement EIS as part of their CAFRA permit application The DEP claims the project is exempt from CAFRA because the site was briefly used for a small dredging operation in 1983 when the property was privately owed It was then abandoned and it soon reverted back to a natural area The site was purchased by the DOT in 2005 The site is surrounded by the Edwin B Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge and the Barnegat Bay This project stinks to high heaven said Doug O Malley director of Environment New Jersey DEP is willing violating numerous environmental laws to site a massive dump next to a residential neighborhood and a wildlife refuge The courts are our last option to stop this project The lawsuit contends the project is egregious because it also violated the Coastal Zone Management Act CZMA which prohibits siting a CDF which resembles an open air landfill for dumping and dewatering potentially toxic and foul smelling dredge spoils siphoned from river bottoms near residential areas Hundreds of thousands of cubic yards of dredge spoils are proposed for a site directly across narrow Dock Road from a line of homes literally on the edge of Barnegat Bay Even more egregious after the impact of Hurricane Sandy NJDEP has said there were no lessons learned from the storm that should be applied to the proposed dump project DEP s failure to acknowledge climate change impacts is especially galling said O Malley Barnegat Bay got crushed by Hurricane Sandy s storm surge and this dredge spoil dump will be on the front lines of the next storm surge It s a disaster waiting to happen Experts have testified that the extreme height of the proposed dredge pile will be unstable and accelerating sea level rise will only make matters worse said Dr Emile DeVito of the New Jersey Conservation Foundation We should not continue to clear sensitive tidal estuaries of naturally deposited sediments nor rely on antiquated disposal approaches that have no long term stability or resiliency Finally the DEP granted permission to fill 7 acres of freshwater wetlands without requiring detailed consideration of alternative sites based on the fiction that DEP was permitting the renovation of an existing CDF although the site has not been used for dredge spoil dumping for more than 30 years and has become a de facto appendage of the adjacent national wildlife refuge The dredging project would remove at least 139 000 cubic yards of spoils from the nearby Westecunk Creek which would be dumped at the end of Dock Road at a 26 acre site However the proposal goes beyond the dredge

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/environmental-groups-homeowners-sue-njdep-approving-massive-dredge-spoil-pile-within (2016-05-01)
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  • NJDEP Coastal Rules Blasted for Doubling Down on Development & Failing Climate Change Test | Environment New Jersey
    coastal flooding erosion and property damage Hurricane Sandy was a disaster that hit our coast and these rules are a disaster as well said Jeff Tittel director of the New Jersey Sierra Club We have a chance to rebuild New Jersey smarter and better Instead we are promoting sprawl and overdevelopment We can choose to protect our coast clean up our storm water restore natural systems But instead the proposed rules will make things worse We need rules that will protect our coast for future generations but under these rules the Jersey Shore we all love may not be there NJDEP s new rules simply ignore the science of sea level rise Other Sandy hit states such as New York Delaware and Maryland are rebuilding higher based on predicted sea level rise They are rebuilding an additional 2 feet higher than what is federally recommended the same height that Rutgers scientists recommended for New Jersey However New Jersey has failed to place such requirements on houses along the Shore and Barnegat Bay The lack of attention given to the science of sea level rise in the proposed DEP regulations is clearly at odds with other states The NJDEP coastal development rule proposal claims that the regulations only work to eliminate red tape and increase governmental transparency However the rules retreat from NJDEP s statutory responsibility to protect coastal communities including The NJDEP Coastal Zone Management Rule has created a system called permit certification This system allows developers to automatically receive permits via an online system without any governmental review or public comment There are new loopholes for marinas which allow for restaurants hotels and commercial establishments to be built in high hazard areas The rule accepts surfaces that are non porous such as lawns crushed stone and compacted shells as permeable which leads to increased storm runoff and flooding There are no vulnerability assessments to reconsider growth centers at all which would slate locations that were flooded during Hurricane Sandy for increased development including Mystic Island Eagleswood Twp and here in Tuckerton The NJDEP rules on coastal development fail to take steps to help protect coastal regions from flooding The rules weaken current requirements aimed at controlling the creation of stormwater If New Jersey truly wanted to minimize storm water runoff it should consider modeling itself off of the city of Philadelphia The city has created a storm water utility which collects a small fee from Philadelphia residents to go towards green infrastructure that reduces flooding within the urban area Such infrastructure includes storm water tree trenches storm water planters and pervious pavement The proposed NJDEP rules provide for no such innovative and proactive approaches to dealing with storm water Instead the rules actively allow development that would only increase the amount of flooding within coastal regions Especially troubling is DEP s stealth relaxation of siting controls on Confined Disposal Facilities CDF said William Potter attorney for residents of Eagleswood Township Ocean County challenging DEP approvals for construction of the

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/njdep-coastal-rules-blasted-doubling-down-development-failing-climate-change-test (2016-05-01)
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  • Wasting Our Waterways Report Documents More Than 5.8 Million Pounds of Toxic Chemicals Dumped in NJ Waterways | Environment New Jersey
    are working with farmers small businesses and thousands of ordinary New Jerseyans to make sure our voices for clean water are heard in Washington The public comment period on the clean water rule began the day before Earth Day and was recently extended into the fall New Jersey s waterways shouldn t be a polluter s dumping ground Our waterways are not a private sewer said O Malley If we want all our streams and rivers to be clean we must restore Clean Water Act protections to all of our waterways this year Background on Linden Bayway Refinery The Linden Bayway Refinery has had environmental conflicts throughout its history In 2003 the New Jersey DEP and OSHA placed the refinery under scrutiny when an abnormal cancer rate was found amongst its workers The refinery has also been cited almost 200 times since 2005 in violation of regulations set by the state The Tremley Point section of Linden was severely affected by Hurricane Sandy A 15 foot tidal surge overtook the city destroying homes roads and washing up hazardous material such as a 150 gallon diesel tank Flooding from the tidal surge impacted 20 to 30 houses in the Tremley Point neighborhood in Linden Tremley Point also faced damages from the storm due to its close proximity to the Bayway Refinery The superstorm caused oil to spill from the refinery and flow towards the city leaving a harsh fuel smell in the air We have seen the full force of Hurricane Sandy in our coastal communities with the obvious devastation of structures but what is less dramatic and just as devastating was the storm surge of toxic chemical slime that entered the homes and basements of whole communities Tremley Point is one such example We will not be able to control Nature but we can certainly enforce the Clean Water Act to keep our people and communities healthy said Georgina Shanley co founder of the Citizens United for Renewable Energy CURE Background on Paulsboro Refinery Paulsboro Health Problems The population in the region has been exposed to water and air contamination from the Paulsboro Refinery other refineries oil and gas pipelines railway transported hazardous materials Solvay Specialty Polymers Exxon Mobil and other processing and manufacturing facilities and storage yards that pose serious health risks and environmental pollution hazards Specifically the EPA data shows with stark numbers that outsized amounts of pollution dumped into the creek and river by the Paulsboro Refinery delivering this pollution downstream to communities and by tidal action up to Philadelphia s and South Jersey s major drinking water intakes on the Delaware The people in the Paulsboro region are subjected day in and day to air and water pollution from the Paulsboro Refinery and many other petrochemical facilities in this part of the Delaware River The public health and environmental impacts of this constant barrage of contamination takes its toll on the health and safety of those who live here unfairly exposing local residents and workers to

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/wasting-our-waterways-report-documents-more-58-million-pounds-toxic-chemicals-dumped-nj (2016-05-01)
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  • Environment New Jersey Hails Assembly Vote to Ban Toxic Waste from Fracking in New Jersey | Environment New Jersey
    interim director of Environment New Jersey The New Jersey Assembly chose drinking water over gas drillers today Fracking is a gas drilling technique that involves pumping a mix of chemicals sand and water down a well at such high pressure that it cracks open gas bearing rock formations When the process is complete wastewater often laced with toxics like benzene heavy metals and even radioactive material flows back to the surface Fracking wastewater has contaminated drinking water sources on numerous occasions in other states The gas drilling boom in Pennsylvania has already produced more than 1 3 billion gallons of contaminated wastewater and drilling operators have been increasingly sending that wastewater to surrounding states In New Jersey DuPont has processed the waste at a facility which discharges into the Delaware River Fracking is the latest source of toxic waste said O Malley That is the last thing New Jersey needs Environment New Jersey cited documented cases of fracking waste polluting water and causing other problems In Pennsylvania after fracking wastewater was discharged from sewage treatment plants into the Monongahela River the state advised 325 000 people in and around Pittsburgh not to use their tap water for more than a week In New Mexico state records show drilling waste has contaminated groundwater at nearly 400 different sites In Ohio deep well injection of fracking wastewater was linked to a 4 0 level earthquake in the Youngstown area last December Environment New Jersey and its allies have worked to build public support for the frack waste ban with citizen activists writing letters to the editor emailing and calling their legislators Last Thursday over 150 citizens came to Trenton to urge their legislators to take action The Assembly s vote marks a growing chorus of states voicing deep concern over the issue

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/ame/environment-new-jersey-hails-assembly-vote-ban-toxic-waste-fracking-new-jersey (2016-05-01)
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  • 8.5 Million Pounds of Toxic Chemicals Dumped into New Jersey’s Waterways | Environment New Jersey
    releases reported to the U S EPA s Toxics Release Inventory for 2010 the most recent data available Major findings of the report include The Delaware River is ranked 5th in the nation for highest amount of total toxic discharges with 6 7 million pounds discharged in 2010 DuPont Chambers Works was the biggest polluter in New Jersey dumping 5 4 million pounds of toxic pollution into the Delaware River Furthermore DuPont was the 4th biggest polluter in the country ConocoPhillips Bayway Refinery was the 18th biggest polluter in the country dumping over 2 4 million pounds of toxic pollution into the Morses Creek which was ranked 19th in the nation for highest amount of total toxic discharges The Delaware River goes from a Wild and Scenic River with exceptional water quality upstream to the fifth worst in the nation in terms of toxic discharges as it flows downstream The lion s share of the toxic pollution comes from DuPont in Salem County where toxics are loaded into the River with abandon The problem is that government agencies allow these discharges to continue by issuing permits to pollute a perverse interpretation of the Clean Water Act This has to stop if we want to provide a healthy economically sound Delaware River for everyone including the estuary and Bay that are so degraded by this overload of toxics said Tracy Carluccio Deputy Director Delaware Riverkeeper Network Environment New Jersey s report summarizes discharges of cancer causing chemicals chemicals that persist in the environment and chemicals with the potential to cause reproductive problems ranging from birth defects to reduced fertility Among the toxic chemicals discharged by facilities are arsenic mercury and benzene Exposure to these chemicals is linked to cancer developmental disorders and reproductive disorders Information is a powerful tool and reports like this are the reason I authored the law establishing the federal toxic emissions right to know program Communities need to know what s polluting their environment in order to fight for stronger water quality protections and better clean ups said U S Senator Frank R Lautenberg D NJ Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Superfund Toxics and Environmental Health There are common sense steps that we can take to turn the tide against toxic pollution of our waters added Fitzpatrick In order to curb the toxic pollution threatening the Delaware River and other state waterways Environment New Jersey recommends the following Pollution Prevention Industrial facilities should reduce their toxic discharges to waterways by switching from hazardous chemicals to safer alternatives Protect all waters The Obama administration should finalize guidelines and conduct a rulemaking to clarify that the Clean Water Act applies to all of our waterways including the 4 087 miles of streams in New Jersey and over 4 2 million New Jerseyans drinking water for which jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act has been called into question as a result of two polluter driven Supreme Court decisions in the last decade Tough permitting and

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/85-million-pounds-toxic-chemicals-dumped-new-jersey%E2%80%99s-waterways (2016-05-01)
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  • As Memorial Day Approaches, Environment New Jersey Calls on Gov. Christie to Clean Up Shore Pollution | Environment New Jersey
    directly into state waters Mottola Jaborska said the group supports what the Governor has included in his ten point plan to protect Barnegat Bay issued last December But that plan she said must be strengthened to include strict limits on the amount of pollution allowed into the Bay and protections for natural lands The group also wants the Governor to establish a plan for the rest of the coast which faces similar threats The NJDEP has designated over 100 miles of New Jersey s ocean waters as impaired and the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration NOAA has called Barnegat Bay one of the most polluted and threatened coastal estuaries of its kind in the nation if not the world In 2009 there were over 180 beach closings when water quality was poor The State of the Bay 2011 report released by the Barnegat Bay Partnership last week found that of 19 key indicators of health 11 have shown no improvement or are in decline Some of the indicators including seagrass declined to the lowest level ever measured according to research professor Michael Kennish of the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences at Rutgers University The science underscores the need for a stronger plan to protect the Bay The Governor must strengthen his plan and make a commitment this summer to setting mandatory pollution limits strong enough to restore the health of the Bay Without these limits to inform the clean up plan we can t be sure enough action will be taken in time to save the Bay said Mottola Jaborska She continued The plan must also include steps to protect remaining wetlands and forests in our Shore counties which are needed to filter pollution and protect water quality And the Governor must extend his plan to the rest of the state s coastal waters which face similar threats and are without protection From 1986 through 2007 the counties of Atlantic Monmouth and Ocean County ranked among the top five in the state for loss of upland forests more than 600 acres yr Atlantic and Monmouth Counties were also among the top five for loss of wetlands more than 125 acres yr Environment New Jersey staff will walk door to door in over 75 New Jersey towns knock on over 100 000 doors and talk to tens of thousands of New Jerseyans about the problems at the Shore and what should be done The group will also be conducting an online petition drive and gathering citizen comment in busy downtowns across the state The work will be based out of two state campaign offices in New Brunswick and Ridgewood We ll be out all summer in neighborhoods across the state educating the public so they can press for strong solutions just like they did the last time the Shore faced big problems said Caity Bogdan Campaign Coordinator in Environment New Jersey s New Brunswick office As development advances all along the coast of New Jersey Barnegat Bay and New Jersey

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/memorial-day-approaches-environment-new-jersey-calls-gov-christie-clean-shore-pollution (2016-05-01)
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  • Environment New Jersey calls on Gov. Christie to protect the Shore | Environment New Jersey
    to Haddonfield Morristown to Highland Park and everywhere in between urging Gov Christie to act now to protect the Shore Environment New Jersey outreach staff including Eric Gauvin joined the event to help deliver the petitions they had helped gather from citizens People in New Jersey remember how disgusted they were in the 1980s when medical waste threatened to spoil the Shore Back then citizens demanded their leaders adopt solutions and leaders acted with strong solutions said Eric Gauvin This past summer citizens once again took a stand demanding the Governor provide strong solutions that will protect the Shore This summer Environment New Jersey went door to door educating New Jerseyans about the issues threatening the Shore The citizen based environmental advocacy organization talked to over 100 000 citizens in more than 85 New Jersey towns The group says Governor Christie must do much more than he has to date to protect water quality at the Shore especially Barnegat Bay which is in dire condition The group called on the Governor to adopt strict limits on nitrogen pollution plaguing Barnegat Bay by the end of next year They also called for protections for open spaces that are needed to protect water quality at the Shore Other groups echoed Environment New Jersey s call We do not need any more studies We need action or Barnegat Bay will die We have turned Barnegat Bay into New Jersey s largest storm water basin and the Bay has become polluted from all that run off Instead of photo ops and walking along the boardwalk we need real policies that will protect the Bay from overdevelopment and pollution said Jeff Tittel Director of New Jersey Sierra Club If New Jersey does not move forward to implement a strict nutrient standard a TMDL clean up

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/environment-new-jersey-calls-gov-christie-protect-shore (2016-05-01)
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  • Rally for the Delaware River Watershed Groups to Governors and President Obama: Vote No to Protect our Water and Communities from Drilling and Fracking | Environment New Jersey
    win this campaign because our future and the River s future are at stake There is no fracking way they will drill the Delaware said Jeff Tittel Director NJ Sierra Club Delaware s Governor Markell got it right by saying the fracking proposal Currently Lacks Sufficient Health and Safety Protections the title of his post on his 4 letter to the Commission saying Delaware votes NO In order to fulfill Gov Markell s demand to assure that the 2 3 of his state s water that comes from the Delaware River remains viable drinking water there has to be a Cumulative Impact Study of the effects of gas drilling on the watershed said Barbara Arrindell Director Damascus Citizens for Sustainability On behalf of the 15 million residents of the Basin Damascus Citizens salutes Governor Markell DCS will continue to insist on a cumulative Impact study in the Basin in order to fully understand BEFOREHAND all the ramifications of drilling concluded Arrindell The Delaware River won today said Doug O Malley field director for Environment New Jersey But New Jersey residents deserve to know whether Governor Christie would have voted to start gas drilling or protect the Delaware The Delaware is still in the crosshairs of the gas drilling industry Never has there been a more reasonable outcry We know we can t live without clean air clean water and clean food we know our grandchildren may need this gas but we don t need it We need to lead our nation away from fossil fuels altogether and fast said Iris Marie Bloom Director Protecting our Waters The cancellation of the DRBC meeting is a turning of the wheel of the nation away from that insanity We are taking the helm We are going sane added Bloom By delaying action the DRBC is recognizing that the proposed regulations are far too weak to prevent harm to communities and the environment from irresponsible drilling said Nadia Steinzor of Earthworks Oil and Gas Accountability Project But they still have a long way to go to prove that they will uphold their mandate to protect vital natural areas and water supplies despite pressure from the gas industry If it wasn t for all of us and our colleagues regionally and in the drilling fields there would by now be drilling and fracking and air pollution and water contamination and landscape desecration and industrialization in the DRB Today is a wonderful and overwhelming display of solidarity and coming together to protect our homes property and environment from the thieves in power the corporations and those they buy and own said Joe Levine NYH2O We must continue to apply all the pressure we can from every perspective on every public official and force them to switch their priorities 28 1 2 days of fuel is not worth ruining the basin for 20 million people for generations We hereby put President Obama on notice that he will be held accountable because he has breached his promise to

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/rally-delaware-river-watershed-groups-governors-and-president-obama-vote-no-protect-our (2016-05-01)
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