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  • Regional Emissions Plan Helps Northeast States Shift to Clean Energy and Cut Pollution | Environment New Jersey
    from Delaware to Maine took a decisive step on clean energy when they created RGGI to limit carbon pollution from power plants The program took full effect in 2009 becoming the first cap on global warming pollution implemented anywhere in the United States Two and a half years later RGGI is successfully sparking investments in clean energy solutions in the region and demonstrating the workability of a program that requires polluters to pay for the right to emit carbon pollution and that invests the money in measures that will reduce emissions and promote local clean energy initiatives RGGI represents a smart common sense approach to dealing with our environment and issues of clean energy said New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney It has wide spread support and its principles are largely endorsed by the people of New Jersey Removing New Jersey from RGGI can only cause harm to our state s environment I urge the governor to reconsider his position Protecting our environment is not just a matter of dollars and cents It s about common sense It s about leaving a clean healthy stable environment to our children and our grandchildren Unfortunately removing ourselves from RGGI will make it that much harder to attain that goal Despite widespread support for the program and the indisputable energy and environmental benefits that RGGI provides the states fossil fuel interests led by the Koch Industries financed Americans for Prosperity have launched an aggressive campaign with misleading paid ads to convince states to pull out of the program Last month New Jersey s Governor Chris Christie announced his intention to end New Jersey s participation in the program Governor Christie s push for NJ to pull out of RGGI runs counter to actions in other states where decision makers have rejected efforts by American for Prosperity and their allies to roll back the 10 state program Similarly the legislative leadership in New Jersey is committed to keeping New Jersey in the program State leaders including Governor Christie know that RGGI has been an important element of the region s efforts to promote clean energy and cut pollution said Rob Sargent Energy Program Director for Environment America who was part of the stakeholder group that helped shape the program Thoughtful people are seeing through the misleading information from out of state fossil fuel interests and rejecting efforts to scuttle this important program The report asserts that by maintaining and improving RGGI using its funds wisely and implementing complementary policies that support its clean energy goals RGGI states can build on the program s success and maintain their leadership in the march towards clean energy Specifically the RGGI states should Strengthen RGGI s cap on carbon emissions A stronger cap will allow RGGI to function better as an incentive to move to cleaner energy sources and improve the states ability to make clean energy investments Invest all RGGI funds in clean energy programs Investing in energy efficiency and clean energy measures will provide energy bill

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/regional-emissions-plan-helps-northeast-states-shift-clean-energy-and-cut-pollution (2016-05-01)
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  • On Pollution, RGGI, Christie Doesn’t Walk the Walk | Environment New Jersey
    those payments in clean energy projects Matt Elliott Global Warming and Clean Energy Advocate at Environment New Jersey issued the following statement It comes as little surprise that the governor vetoed this bill late on a Friday when few people were paying attention The people of New Jersey support RGGI and want our state to do more to tackle pollution and promote clean energy A majority of New Jersey legislators strongly support RGGI And over 10 000 citizens have recently emailed or called the governor to urge him to stay in the program And yet Governor Christie refused to listen and plowed ahead on his own cheered every step of the way by groups funded by out of state fossil fuel money Once again Governor Christie has sided with polluters over the people of New Jersey in attacking RGGI our only tool to directly control CO2 emissions from power plants Contrary to the governor s spin RGGI has been heralded as a success in New Jersey and across the Northeast Here in New Jersey proceeds from RGGI have helped New Jersey based businesses and institutions invest in clean energy projects that are creating enough energy to power close to 20 000 households This means less pollution cleaner air and lower utility bills for these companies In vetoing a bill that would keep New Jersey in the program Governor Christie said we have to do more to tackle global warming We agree But the solution is not to abandon one of our only tools to address this problem More than ever we should be working together cooperatively with our neighboring states to make RGGI even stronger To abandon the program and years of hard work and progress is little more than a political stunt that takes us in the wrong direction

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/pollution-rggi-christie-doesn%E2%80%99t-walk-walk (2016-05-01)
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  • Local Citizens Rally For Clean Air Program | Environment New Jersey
    and keep New Jersey in the program At the event citizens asked local legislators Senator Kevin O Toole Assemblyman Scott Rumana and Assemblyman David Russo all of Legislative district 40 to support legislation that would require the state to stay in the program The three had previously voted with the governor in opposition to RGGI We are here today to call on the legislature to stand up for the people of New Jersey our environment and green jobs here in our state by supporting RGGI RGGI has worked It has helped to create 1 700 jobs in our state while reducing green house gases at the same time In a state like New Jersey who has poor air quality and the state of the economy it is important to stay in RGGI for our environment and economic future The Governor instead is siding with the coal industry and the Koch Brothers over the lungs of the people of New Jersey and our economy said Jeff Tittel Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club The event today formally launched a campaign aimed at channeling local citizen frustration over the proposed rollback Citizens throughout District 40 have pledged to speak out in support of the program over the coming months I support RGGI because it provides real economic incentives to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions while simultaneously investing in clean energy solutions critical to our future said Matt Smith local resident and volunteer organizer with 350 org an international grassroots movement to solve the climate crisis Students around the state are working together for a clean energy future and it s time that state elected officials start to do the same said Amanda Nesheiwat Ramapo college student and chairperson of the Secaucus Environmental Committee Gatherings like this rally are making this movement stronger and our voices heard In announcing his opposition to the program Governor Christie characterized RGGI as an economic burden But a recent independent economic analysis shows that RGGI has added 151 million in value to New Jersey s economy and has supported over 1 700 local New Jersey jobs even as the state s overall economy was shrinking In addition the analysis shows that because of RGGI funded clean energy investments electric customers are saving money on utility bills Residents businesses and industry will all realize energy cost savings as a direct result of RGGI The FACTS are that RGGI has been a net positive for NJ more jobs cleaner air and funding to support clean energy projects said Harriet Shugarman executive director of Climate Mama and a member of North Jersey Public Policy Network Why is our Governor trying to take away one of the few tools RGGI in our State toolkit that actually helps fights for and create cleaner air for our children Indeed the governor s action on RGGI is just one of many attempts to scale back environmental and clean energy programs under the guise of addressing economic woes The Governor s withdrawal from RGGI

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/local-citizens-rally-clean-air-program (2016-05-01)
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  • Beaches report statement | Environment New Jersey
    list All beach goers know that a thunderstorm will wash out a day But not enough people know that after the clouds clear the pollution that has been funneled into our coastal and bay waters makes swimming the last thing you want to do This development binge to hit the Shore far exceeds the state average According to Rutgers NJ s four coastal counties Monmouth Ocean Atlantic and Cape May accounted for over 28 of the state s growth earlier last decade Ocean Co took top prize with over 10 000 acres and Monmouth was a close second with 9 000 That trend only accelerated throughout the decade The more impervious cover the more stormwater created which flushes pollution onto our coast The Barnegat Bay watershed now reaches up to 33 impervious cover This should be the time that Congress is helping us to strengthen the Clean Water Act and help us to repair our infrastructure Instead they re working to weaken it From supporting stand alone legislation HR 2018 that will weaken enforcement of water quality standards and loosen restrictions on discharges of dredge material to adding amendments to budget bills to strip the Clean Water Act authority over seasonal waterways Congress is rowing the wrong way We don t need rollbacks from Congress we need help fixing our aging wastewater infrastructure The first rule of a crisis is to stop digging the hole deeper and that s what the state s Water Quality Management Plan can literally do The cheapest sewer line to repair is the one that you don t build We can t build sewers and expand development into environmentally sensitive lands and not expect to produce more polluted run off That s why the EPA granted funding to help finish the job and why they

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/beaches-report-statement (2016-05-01)
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  • New Report: Camden; Middlesex / Somerset; Ocean / Monmouth; and Trenton Makes Top 20 Smoggiest Regions in Nation List | Environment New Jersey
    We cannot afford policies that allow polluters off the hook and put the public health of our state in jeopardy It is high time all our leaders realize that pollution does not create jobs it creates sick people higher medical bills lost days of work and is a drag on our economy The new report ranks cities in New Jersey and across the country for the number of days when the air was unhealthy to breathe due to smog pollution last year and this summer and includes new data showing that the problem is even worse than the public thought The research shows there were many additional days last year when residents in the smoggiest regions of New Jersey were exposed to smog levels that a national scientific panel has found to be dangerous to breathe but because of outdated federal air quality rules those at risk were never alerted to unhealthy air levels The Camden area of New Jersey had 7 additional unhealthy smog days the region of Middlesex Somerset and Hunterdon Counties had 16 and Trenton had 14 For too long smog pollution has left our children gasping for breath This report is a powerful reminder that we need to do more to protect public health including adopting a transportation strategy to reduce the number of vehicles on the road and continued stimulus of renewable energy sources for our state said State Senator Bob Smith D Piscataway and chair of the Senate Environment Committee The group held two events today at parks in Sayreville and Lakewood and were joined by representatives from GreenFaith the NJ Sierra Club Sen Bob Smith Asm John Wisniewski and a medical doctor Smog is one of the most harmful air pollutants and is also one of the most pervasive Smog is formed when pollution from cars power plants and industrial facilities reacts with other pollutants in the presence of sunlight Smog is of particular concern in the summer months when warmer temperatures lead to the build up of higher concentrations of smog pollution On days with elevated levels of smog pollution children the elderly and people with respiratory illness suffer the most Children who grow up in areas with high levels of smog may develop diminished lung capacity putting them at greater risk of lung disease later in life Additionally children exposed to smog in the womb can experience lower birth weight and growth retardation Even among healthy adults repeated exposure to smog pollution over time permanently damages lung tissues decreases the ability to breathe normally exacerbates chronic diseases like asthma and can even cause premature death Gov Christie is proposing plans to make our air pollution worse from building more power plants to cutting our clean energy goals to trying to pull out of RGGI the regional anti pollution pact This report should be a wake up call to the Governor that air pollution is still an every day problem that hurts the most vulnerable kids and the elderly said Fitzpatrick Smog

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/new-report-camden-middlesex-somerset-ocean-monmouth-and-trenton-makes-top-20-smoggiest (2016-05-01)
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  • Can You Hear Me Now? Local Citizens, Environmentalists Rally At Rutherford, Princeton and Asbury Park To Build Support for RGGI & Clean Air | Environment New Jersey
    state legislative districts 36 16 and 11 Environment New Jersey has had outreach staff on the ground in the three districts petitioning citizens on busy streets and going door to door since Saturday gathering hand written letters and petition signatures to Legislators as well as postcards urging the Governor to change his position on RGGI In addition nightly phone banking of Environment New Jersey s members in these districts has been generating a steady stream of phone calls to all three Senators representing these districts on a daily basis from local constituents who support the RGGI program and want their Senators to do the same New Jersey has some of the worst air pollution in the nation in fact this summer the state ranked 5th in the nation for smog pollution Last spring out of state fossil fuel companies paid handsomely to try to kill the RGGI program spreading lies and misinformation across the state Incredibly Governor Christie went along with their campaign of misinformation and he announced in May that he hopes to pull New Jersey out of RGGI by the end of this year The Legislature tried to push back by passing a bill to keep the state in the program but the governor vetoed it this past August Senators Paul Sarlo Jen Beck and Kip Bateman as well as Assemblywomen Casagrande and Angelini and Assemblyman Biondi stood with the governor and with out of state fossil fuel interests and voted against the bill We re calling on these state legislators to be true leaders on clean air and clean energy and do all they can to override the governor s decision continued Mottola Jaborska This is personal this is about clean air for my children RGGI is a successful program that is working to create a clean energy future for my children Let s work together to make it even better said Harriet Shugarman North Jersey Public Policy Network ANJEC strongly supports New Jersey s participation in RGGI Our state s municipalities have been working to reduce their output of greenhouse gases but they have no way to reduce of carbon dioxide from power plants outside town borders State and regional action is absolutely necessary if we are to combat climate change said Sandy Batty Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions ANJEC The groups also urge the legislators in these three districts to support a bill now moving through the statehouse S3032 that would expand New Jersey s commitment to clean energy to 30 by 2020 and cut state wide energy demand 20 by promoting more efficient buildings It would also maintain the current level of funding for the successful Clean Energy Program which funds energy saving retrofits for homes and businesses This is the kind of forward thinking energy policy we need Not rollbacks like Governor Christie is proposing but real meaningful steps forward continued Mottola Jaborska Combating climate change means cleaner air greener jobs and a securer nation RGGI s a key part of that

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/can-you-hear-me-now-local-citizens-environmentalists-rally-rutherford-princeton-and-asbury (2016-05-01)
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  • Environment New Jersey Launches Education Campaign Targeting NJ House Republicans for Three Strikes Against Clean Air | Environment New Jersey
    let New Jersey voters know their Congressman supported out of state polluters instead of standing up for New Jersey s health New Jerseyans deserve better The size of the online media purchase is described as a significant 5 figure buy and is targeting the state s largest web sites including nj com with banners targeting hometown voters in all major newspapers a homepage takeover of PolitickerNJ sponsorship of the Wake Up Call e mail newsletter and targeted Google ads Ads will be running for a week The House of Representatives approved the TRAIN Act which would indefinitely delay the clean up of toxic power plant pollution another bill H R 2681 that prevents clean air standards that lower mercury and other toxic air pollution from cement plants and a bill H R 2250 that would prevents standards to reduce toxic pollution from industrial incinerators and boilers at power plants The TRAIN Act alone if passed could result in 139 500 lives lost due to smog soot and toxic air pollution In New Jersey it could result in over 3 200 lives lost due to air pollution The health benefits delivered by the incinerator and boiler standards are as high as 54 billion annually and the health benefits from cement standards will be as high as 18 billion annually All of these bills were voted on the heels of an Environment New Jersey report Danger in the Air that found New Jersey s air to be some of the smoggiest in the country The findings included that the North Jersey metropolitan area including New York and Connecticut ranked as the 5th smoggiest metropolitan area in the country this past summer Findings from 2010 were equally alarming Rep Frank LoBiondo s district R 2 includes much of South Jersey including the Vineland

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/environment-new-jersey-launches-education-campaign-targeting-nj-house-republicans-three (2016-05-01)
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  • Big Win for New Jersey’s Air: Pres. Obama & EPA Protect Public Health with Landmark Mercury Rule for Power Plants | Environment New Jersey
    PA IN WV alone power plant emissions of mercury in 2010 was 13 852 pounds New Jersey s emissions 88 pounds Pennsylvania emissions alone were 3 964 pounds New Jersey has led the way in reducing mercury emissions This is not pie in the sky technology we have been using these pollution controls for years It s time we brought out of state power plants out of the Eisenhower era and into the 21st century said O Malley Right now mercury pollution is so widespread that at least one in ten American women of childbearing age has enough mercury in her blood to put her baby at risk should she become pregnant By limiting emissions of mercury and air toxics from power plants the Obama administration s new standard is expected to prevent 130 000 cases of childhood asthma symptoms and save 11 000 lives every year Momentum for the new federal standard began with state level standards in New Jersey and other states Such state level action helped prove that significant cuts in mercury pollution were indeed possible EPA s proposed mercury standard will protect children and families from a known poison said O Malley Senator Menendez and Senator Lautenberg deserve kudos for standing up for New Jersey s families by supporting EPA s much needed standard and oppose efforts by polluters and their allies in Congress to delay or block EPA s efforts For decades the coal industry many utilities and their allies in Congress and past administrations have successfully delayed cutting mercury and other toxic air pollutants from power plants to protect public health even though technology to control toxic air pollution is widely available and already being used by power plants in New Jersey Data that Environment New Jersey collected uses newly released 2010 emissions data

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjersey.org/news/nje/big-win-new-jersey%E2%80%99s-air-pres-obama-epa-protect-public-health-landmark-mercury-rule-power (2016-05-01)
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