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  • As Paris Climate Talks Kick Off, New Solar Report Shows Newark As Top City Per Capita for Solar in Northeast | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    solar panels The panels were installed more than a decade ago by LB Electric produce 50 KW of power and has saved NJIT more than 300 000 over the last decade Achieving a sustainable world is one of NJIT s core missions and we view new forms of energy production as central to that goal Our scientists engineers and creative incubator companies are addressing this challenge on many fronts from more efficient silicon cell manufacturing technology to higher efficiency thin film photovoltaics to next generation paintable carbon nanotube PV to novel architectural design concepts for building integrated photovoltaics said Donald Sebastian president of NJIT s New Jersey Innovation Institute As Newark emerges as a leading Smart City NJIT will be there as a partner to infuse cutting edge technology into practical solutions for sustainable urban living Solar also helps to reduce air pollution especially on hot summer days when the electric grid is most strained and when ozone alerts are most common Essex County which garnered a failing grade in the American Lung Association s 2015 State of the Air report has more than 54 000 adults who suffer from asthma and more than 16 000 asthmatic children Hudson County received a D for air quality and has more than 47 000 asthmatic adults and more than 11 000 children who suffer from asthma Solar is also an investment against climate change and the heat island impact that scientists predict for cities Climate models predict that cities like Newark would face more than 70 days above 90 degrees later this century and 25 days above 100 degrees As the Paris climate talks commence today one of America s key policy initiatives in negotiations will be the EPA s Clean Power Plan which will reduce carbon emission by 32 by 2030 from the country s fossil fuel power sector Despite New Jersey s opposition to the plan solar is a key building block in complying with the EPA requirements to reduce New Jersey s carbon emissions by roughly a quarter oer the next 15 years While House Republicans plan a vote to oppose the initiative the vote is expected to be thwarted by a certain Presidential veto With prices going down concern about global warming going up and continued policy leadership at the city level solar power is growing rapidly in New Jersey s cities said Doug O Malley director of Environment New Jersey As the Paris climate talks kick off our cities can be clean energy catalysts and help us to meet the EPA Clean Power Plan and reduce air pollution by allowing solar to shine The Obama Administration this summer announced a Solar For All initiative to make it easier for middle and low income communities to embrace solar Cities around the state have been assisted by local non profits and community development corporations like La Casa de Don Pedro in Newark adopting the technology Companies like Grid Alternatives are directly providing assistance to low income communities and individuals

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/paris-climate-talks-kick-new-solar-report-shows-newark-top-city-capita-solar-northeast (2016-05-01)
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  • Going Once, Going Twice, Sold!: After Bidding, Off-Shore Wind Energy Areas Sold Off the Jersey Shore to Major Wind Companies | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    longer a question if there will be off shore wind in New Jersey it is now a question of when More than 1 5 million acres off the Atlantic Coast now including close to 344 000 acres off New Jersey s waters which were successfully auctioned today have already been designated by state and federal officials for offshore wind power development and more are being considered These areas could produce more than 16 000 megawatts including more than 3 400 megawatts from New Jersey alone of virtually pollution free electricity These total areas of off shore wind development could equal as much as 16 fossil fuel burning power plants making offshore wind an attractive option for states developing plans to shift to clean energy to achieve the targets in Clean Power Plan recently finalized by the Environmental Protection Agency EPA this August The final notice of sale required that off shore wind companies can t bid and be awarded both lease areas which led to the diversity of bids and the separate winners The proposed off shore wind lease area when fully developed could power more than 1 2 million homes The Wind Energy Area begins about seven nautical miles off the coast from Atlantic City A map can be found here and extends 21 nautical miles off the Shore The Bureau of Ocean Management has already awarded nine commercial offshore wind leases including seven through the competitive lease sale process two in an area offshore Rhode Island Massachusetts another two offshore Massachusetts two offshore Maryland and one offshore Virginia These lease sales have generated about 14 5 million in winning bids for more than 700 000 acres in federal waters This July Deepwater Wind put steel in the water to officially begin the construction of the nation s first

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/going-once-going-twice-sold-after-bidding-shore-wind-energy-areas-sold-jersey-shore-major-0 (2016-05-01)
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  • Time to ban the beads | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    to the top of the food chain people The documented adverse health effects in wildlife from digesting microbeads includes cellular necrosis inflammation and lacerations of the digestive tract liver toxicity and disruption of the endocrine system Big problem simple solution That s the bad news The good news is that there is a simple solution ban microbeads Banning microbeads from personal use is pretty easy to do Just check the label for polyethylene or polypropylene which are the most commonly used plastics There s also a free app that lets you easily check to see if products contain microbeads by scanning barcodes with your smart phone You won t even have to stop using microscrubbers as there are numerous natural environmentally responsible alternatives that have been used effectively for decades for this purpose Making a personal commitment to not purchase products that contain microbeads is commendable but it won t take the product off the shelves for others to buy We need comprehensive legislation to ensure that happens More than a dozen states have already banned partially banned or are considering banning microbeads In June 2014 Illinois became the first state to partially ban microbeads in personal care products and earlier this month California became the latest with the most comprehensive ban to date Where states have failed to enact bans some counties are banning them The local bans vary in their effectiveness Most have industry created loopholes for the use of so called biodegradable plastics which may still be toxic and break down slowly in aquatic environments Other bans only address certain products and do not address the myriad of products that contain microbeads such as cosmetics deodorants lotions and cleaners Personal commitment and local bans are a great start as is the industry beginning to police itself Several

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/blogs/environment-america-blog/ame/time-ban-beads (2016-05-01)
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  • Commuters & Advocates Protest NJ Transit Fare Increases, Warn of Future Fare Hikes Because of Tranit Funding Crisis | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    its debt service stifling New Jersey s ability to fund much needed capital improvements to expand mass transit and repair its crumbling roads and bridges said Janna Chernetz Senior New Jersey Policy Analyst for Tri State Transportation Campaign We re nearly halfway to the unveiling of our next state budget and we re not any closer to solving our transportation crisis so riders aren t facing a worse crunch next year The 2016 state budget included just 33 million in state subsidy for NJ Transit which paved the way for the NJ Transit fare hike as well as the continued raid of the Clean Energy Fund of 62 million and redirection of 295 million from the Turnpike Authority that was supposed to be dedicated to the cancelled ARC tunnel The fare hikes and service cuts highlight the severity of the multi faceted transportation funding crisis in New Jersey The fare hikes set to go into effect this week while not as large as 2010 s hikes will nonetheless harm New Jersey s working families and its economy advocates warned New Jersey s low wage workers are falling further and further behind as wages stagnate poverty stays stubbornly high and now those who depend on public transit will have to pay an even larger share of their income just to get to work said Serena Rice Executive Director of the Anti Poverty Network of New Jersey If we want to grow our economy we need to stop making it harder for our workers to get to work How can we possibly expect to build a strong economy if people cannot get to work asked Ann Vardeman Program Director at New Jersey Citizen Action We cannot continue to stand by and watch our public transit infrastructure crumble We need our elected leaders to stand up for the working people of New Jersey and properly fund transportation There is no more time to kick the can down the road The fare hikes will also harm New Jersey s environment as higher fares and sub par service sends more New Jerseyans into their cars This week starts the great train robbery and bus robbery Not only does the 9 percent increase rob pockets of commuters it will cause a drop in ridership putting more people back in cars and leading to more traffic and pollution said Jeff Tittel Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club The Christie Administration could have easily come up with additional funding sources like a gas tax to prevent this hike but instead they ve told thousands of people who opposed it to take a hike This will hurt our economy and businesses people will be delayed and get to work late while worsening our air quality problems Cyndi Steiner executive director of the New Jersey Bike Walk Coalition added that these fare hikes reflect a complete disregard for the value of a transportation system that provides a variety of transportation options enabling a workforce diverse in economic level geographic

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/commuters-advocates-protest-nj-transit-fare-increases-warn-future-fare-hikes-because-tranit (2016-05-01)
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  • Clean and Green Forum Puts Focus on Capital City in Debate on PennEast Pipeline, Fracking and the Green Job Economy | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    our environment The proposed PennEast pipeline flies in the face of those efforts cutting through protected and preserved land risking habitat for endangered species and threatening crucial water resources I stand in firm opposition to the pipeline and any project that puts corporations before the preservation of our environment We must stand together to protect our natural resources said Congresswoman Watson Coleman D 12 Senator Shirley K Turner who represents Trenton said Our residents have made it clear that their priority is to protect and preserve our state s open spaces agricultural land and natural resources Allowing the billions of dollars our taxpayers have invested for conservation and land and waterway protection to be wasted for corporate profit would be reprehensible The Delaware River provides 30 of New Jersey s drinking water but New Jersey only controls 23 3 of the water shed Pennsylvania controls 50 3 and New York controls 18 5 said Jerry Haimowitz an Environmental Engineer To protect the Delaware New Jersey should ban the disposal of fracking waste at sewage treatment plants in New Jersey support the DRBC and New York bans on fracking and ask DRBC and NY to ban the disposal of fracking waste in their sewage treatment plants The Citizens Campaign an organization that has been working directly with Trenton residents hosted the second section of the evening Civic Trustees a new force for strengthening Trenton s ability to tackle tough issues served as panelists Through the over 30 local leaders within our Trenton Civic Trust we have already demonstrated how a solutions oriented no blame approach can generate tangible results including on critical environmental issues said Harry Pozycki President of The Citizens Campaign In fact as a direct result of the leadership of the Trenton Civic Trustees the City of Trenton is

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/clean-and-green-forum-puts-focus-capital-city-debate-penneast-pipeline-fracking-and-green (2016-05-01)
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  • NJ Off-Shore Wind Advocates Urge Obama Administration To Keep Moving Forward on Wind | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    Christie to finally implement his own off shore wind bill from five years ago It s never too late to follow your own law said Doug O Malley director of Environment New Jersey Thankfully the federal government isn t pushing the pause button on clean energy November s auction of off shore water will finally put a price tag on the economic value of off shore wind The move by the Department of Interior comes after five years of inaction by the Christie Administration to implement a bill signed by Gov Christie in August 2010 greenlighting off shore wind and creating a timeline for the Board of Public Utilities to create an off shore wind program Five years later the state has still not implemented the bill The year so far has marked a major milestone in America s pursuit of offshore wind power with our first project finally under construction off the coast of Rhode Island said the letter We are counting on your leadership to ensure that the Block Island offshore wind farm is truly the beginning of a new energy chapter for America This July BPU President Rick Mroz promised during his Senate Judiciary confirmation hearing that the BPU would hire an independent consultant to assist the BPU with the creation of an off shore wind program The Off Shore Wind Economic Development Act had a goal of 1 100 MW from off shore wind and the recently reviewed Energy Master Plan discussed the potential for 3 000 MW of off shore wind off the Jersey Shore Momentum is building for offshore wind in the U S This summer constrctuction began at the nation s first offshore wind farm off the Rhode Island coast near Block Island At the same time the Obama administration has awarded nine

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/nj-shore-wind-advocates-urge-obama-administration-keep-moving-forward-wind (2016-05-01)
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  • Tired of Waiting, Feds Move Forward On Off-Shore Wind Leases Off the Jersey Shore | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    wind development could equal as much as 16 fossil fuel burning power plants making offshore wind an attractive option for states developing plans to shift to clean energy to achieve the targets in Clean Power Plan recently finalized by the Environmental Protection Agency EPA in early August I am glad to see BOEM moving forward with plans to auction off 344 000 acres off the coast of New Jersey for the development of clean limitless wind power said Senator Robert Menendez D NJ Projects like this are vital in our fight to expand clean energy cut carbon pollution and create good paying jobs Today s announcement is just another example of how New Jersey can become a national leader in the clean energy economy There will be two lease areas in the total Wind Energy Areas that will be put up for auction by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management BOEM The final notice of sale will require that off shore wind companies can t bid and be awarded both lease areas The proposed off shore wind lease area if fully developed could power more than 1 2 million homes The Wind Energy Area begins about seven nautical miles off the coast from Atlantic City A map can be found here The Bureau of Ocean Management has already awarded nine commercial offshore wind leases including seven through the competitive lease sale process two in an area offshore Rhode Island Massachusetts another two offshore Massachusetts two offshore Maryland and one offshore Virginia These lease sales have generated about 14 5 million in winning bids for more than 700 000 acres in federal waters This July Deepwater Wind put steel in the water to officially begin the construction of the nation s first off shore wind mill of the coast of Rhode

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/tired-waiting-feds-move-forward-shore-wind-leases-jersey-shore (2016-05-01)
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  • Gov. Christie Attempts To Duck EPA Clean Power Plan, but Can't Ignore Climate Change | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    to build natural gas plants as he recently stated at a town hall in New Hampshire As we approach the 3rd anniversary of Hurricane Sandy it is a fair question whether the Governor continues to view global warming as an esoteric issue The NJDEP statement announcing the stay makes no reference to the potential dangers climate change poses to the state either from sea level rise rising temperatures or increased extreme weather events The statement doesn t reference the legislative mandates of the Global Warming Response Act to reduce emissions by 80 by 2050 an aggressive but necessary mandate The final EPA Clean Power Plan issued in early August was stronger than the draft version proposed last year Nationally power plants will need to reduce their carbon emission by 32 over the next 15 years However New Jersey s carbon pollution reductions from power plants over the next 15 years were reduced from 43 to 23 We can only wonder what the Christie Administration s reaction would have been if the draft plan hadn t been altered The EPA Clean Power Plan is the first time there has ever been any federal limit put on the unchecked carbon pollution being emitted from power plants across the country New Jersey can t continue to skate by on the clean energy achievements of past administrations Today s announcement by the Christie Administration that it is requesting a stay of the requirements of the EPA Clean Power Plan uses a thin argument that the EPA is overstepping its legal authority The 2007 Supreme Court decision Massachusetts vs EPA clearly states that EPA has the authority to regulate carbon pollution under the power of the Clean Air Act This letter should have been cced to Iowa Republican primary voters because it s clear that

    Original URL path: http://environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/gov-christie-attempts-duck-epa-clean-power-plan-cant-ignore-climate-change (2016-05-01)
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