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  • NJDEP Coastal Rules Blasted for Doubling Down on Development & Failing Climate Change Test | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    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 largest CDF in the Mid Atlantic region A CDF is a kind of open air landfill for dumping frequently toxic dredge spoils Potter added Due to their environmental

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/njdep-coastal-rules-blasted-doubling-down-development-failing-climate-change-test (2016-05-01)
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  • Governor Christie Moves Forward with Plan To Double Down on Climate Inaction | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    comment New Jersey residents have an opportunity to weigh in on the administration s move to exit the program this time around Environment New Jersey and NRDC encourage residents to share their opinions on whether or not Christie should abandon the program by September 5 by visiting http www nj gov dep rules comments Refer to DEP Docket Number 04 14 15 and include name and affiliation Residents can also give comments in person at a public hearing that will be held Friday August 8 at 10 a m at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection First Floor Hearing Room 401 E State Street in Trenton RGGI can help New Jersey comply with forthcoming federal pollution standards In response to the threat posed by global warming the Environmental Protection Agency recently announced the Clean Power Plan the first national standards to limit carbon pollution from power plants a key part of President Obama s Climate Action Plan New Jersey and all other states will be required to develop proposals to meet the goals set by those standards by 2016 If they don t the EPA will develop a generic plan they can adopt Despite all of the warning signs and the chorus of New Jersey residents and government leaders urging him to stop Governor Christie is continuing down on a path that ends on the wrong side of history said Dale Bryk Deputy Director of Programs for the Natural Resources Defense Council Christie can keep burying his head in the sand but the people of New Jersey and the nation will not RGGI has been an environmental and economic success Designed by a bipartisan group of Northeastern and Mid Atlantic governors in the mid 2000s RGGI has significantly helped reduce carbon pollution while at the same time supporting economic development creating new jobs and saving consumers money on energy in the nine states that currently participate According to a recent report by Environment Northeast ENE RGGI has already helped Reduce carbon pollution by almost 30 percent Cut electricity prices by 8 percent Create more than 23 000 job years of work Lock in more than 1 8 billion in long term savings on energy bills and Add more than 2 4 billion in economic activity to the region When withdrawing from RGGI in 2011 Governor Christie acknowledged that climate change is real and that it is already having an impact on New Jersey but expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of the program but the facts now speak for themselves RGGI is an economic engine and pollution cutting powerhouse said Bryk New Jersey deserves the same benefits its neighbors are seeing from RGGI from less air pollution to more jobs and lower electric bills Action on climate is urgent and New Jersey residents support it Earlier this year the Obama administration released the third National Climate Assessment the most comprehensive report yet on the impacts of climate change on the United States The report was a combined effort of more

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/governor-christie-moves-forward-plan-double-down-climate-inaction (2016-05-01)
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  • News Releases | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    Poised To Make History in the Race for Offshore Wind As the clock ticks down for Congress to extend critical tax credits for wind power a new report shows that with continued state and federal leadership New Jersey could be among the first states along the Atlantic seaboard with offshore wind farms Read more about New Jersey Poised To Make History in the Race for Offshore Wind News Release Environment New Jersey Final Green Light for Clean Cars Today the Obama administration finalized new clean car standards that will double the fuel efficiency of today s vehicles by 2025 drastically reducing emissions of carbon pollution and cutting oil use in New Jersey and nationwide The standards will cover new cars and light trucks in model years 2017 2025 and require those vehicles to meet the equivalent of a 54 5 miles per gallon standard by 2025 Read more about Final Green Light for Clean Cars News Release Environment New Jersey Broad Range of Stakeholders Call on Northeast Governors Including Christie to Improve Successful Clean Energy and Anti Pollution Program New Jersey organizations today joined more than 300 others in calling on Governor Christie and other Northeast and Mid Atlantic governors to build on progress reducing pollution and promoting clean energy by improving the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative RGGI The coalition which includes environmental and public health organizations consumer advocates and clean energy and mainstream businesses highlighted RGGI s success to date In addition they called on governors to strengthen the program s pollution reduction targets and increase local investments in clean energy and energy efficiency measures that benefit the climate the economy public health and energy consumers Read more about Broad Range of Stakeholders Call on Northeast Governors Including Christie to Improve Successful Clean Energy and Anti Pollution Program News

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news?page=11 (2016-05-01)
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  • New Report Documents Environmental Benefits of Electric Cars | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    on oil even when charged with coal fired power according to Environment New Jersey s report That s because electric motors are much more efficient than the internal combustion engine And as our electricity system incorporates more wind solar and other forms of zero emission energy electric cars will only get cleaner Ultimately an electric vehicle charged completely with wind or solar power can operate with little to no impact on public health or contribution to global warming Electric vehicles represent a key way to solve our fossil fuel dependence and the climate crisis while at the same time creating good manufacturing jobs said Rick Engler director of the NJ Work Environment Council Greening our electric grid and creating an electric car infrastructure must be part of a new green job economy With new advanced cars whether a plug in hybrid model like the Chevy Volt or a fully electric model like the Nissan Leaf or the Tesla Model S Americans can travel increasingly longer distances on electricity alone Thanks in part to smart clean cars policies adopted by states like New Jersey and the Obama administration most major automobile manufacturers are now offering fully electric or plug in hybrid electric vehicles powered primarily by electricity instead of gasoline Consumers ability to purchase EVs should not be limited by government in fact just the opposite said Chuck Feinberg chairman of the Clean Cities Coalition This Environment New Jersey report points out in a very clear way the need for our leaders to lead all levels of government should actively promote the proliferation of EVs EVs can and will play a critical role in advancing our economic energy and environmental security The Legislature has started to take steps to bolster electric car infrastructure including bills to encourage development of electric vehicle charging stations in transportation projects A1719 as well as requiring the electric vehicle recharging stations at rest areas along the Turnpike Parkway A17128 and a public private pilot program for charging stations A2668 However there is much more state government can do to accelerate the market for electric vehicles and make them a viable and attractive choice for more drivers The report recommends the following New Jersey should follow through on the ambitious goals for electric vehicle deployment set through the Zero Emission Vehicle program Right now the state is falling behind Eight other states including New York are following through with the electric vehicle action plan announced at the end of May including many of our Northeast neighbors The Zero Emission Vehicle ZEV Action Plan is aimed at spurring sales of 3 3 million zero emission vehicles by 2025 through consumer incentives and regulatory action New Jersey should work with neighboring states to accelerate electric vehicle deployment not ignore them Among the actions outlined in the eight state alliance s plan are efforts to promote installation of recharging stations at workplaces expanding both cash and noncash incentives for consumers to buy electric cars push dealers to more aggressively promote

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/tesla-bill-waits-action-state-senate-new-report-documents-environmental-benefits-electric (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 Research and Policy Center
    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 layer upon layer of pollution as well as all those downstream who suffer the degradation of the river s water Combined with other sources of pollution such as

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/wasting-our-waterways-report-documents-more-58-million-pounds-toxic-chemicals-dumped-nj (2016-05-01)
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  • EPA proposes first-ever limits on carbon pollution from existing power plants | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    Robert Menendez D NJ The new power plant rules allow for flexibility in reducing carbon emissions state by state and I look forward to living in a cleaner greener New Jersey This Administrative action moves us away from unnecessary partisan bickering and nonsensical climate denying and puts us on a path forward that will improve our environment public health and our energy future Across the country Americans have felt the consequences of global warming In 2011 and 2012 the number of heat waves was nearly triple the long term average In the Northeast and Midwest extreme precipitation events have increased by 30 percent Here in New Jersey extreme downpours and superstorms like Hurricane Sandy are devastating our communities and threatening public safety in addition to rising sea levels Virtually every scientist agrees Our climate is changing largely as a result of human activities and failing to act would leave a moral stain on our generation said Congressman Rush Holt D 12 Organized well funded special interests will fight this Our adversary is not simply inefficiency in power plants but corporations who would put their financial interests ahead of children s freedom from asthma attacks and the millions of lives at risk from climate change The National Climate Assessment released in May recognized today s impacts with the statement Climate change once considered an issue for a distant future has moved firmly into the present 2 Until now there have been no federal limits on the amount of carbon pollution power plants are permitted to spew into the atmosphere This announcement is a huge win for the health of our families and our environment said O Malley It is in large part a testament to the millions of Americans more than 600 local elected officials and hundreds of small businesses who

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/epa-proposes-first-ever-limits-carbon-pollution-existing-power-plants (2016-05-01)
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  • Gov. Christie Trying to Double Down on Climate Inaction | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    This time the people of New Jersey will get their say said O Malley We want all of our leaders to protect us from the impacts of global warming and we will make sure that Governor Christie hears us loud and clear RGGI can help New Jersey comply with forthcoming federal pollution standards In response to the threat posed by global warming next Monday the Environmental Protection Agency will announce the first national standards to limit carbon pollution from power plants a key part of President Obama s Climate Action Plan New Jersey and all other states will be required to develop proposals to meet those standards by 2016 If they don t the EPA will develop a generic plan they can adopt Governor Christie is headed down on a path that ends on the wrong side of history said Dale Bryk Energy and Transportation Program Director for the Natural Resources Defense Council Our nation is moving full speed ahead to cut carbon pollution from dirty fossil fuel power plants and New Jersey s neighbors are already ahead of the pack thanks to RGGI Continuing to deny the state a program that s proven to create jobs lower bills and boost local economies especially with federal rules just around the corner is not only nonsense it s a losing battle RGGI has been an environmental and economic success Designed by a bipartisan group of Northeastern and Mid Atlantic governors in the mid 2000s RGGI has significantly helped reduce carbon pollution while at the same time supporting economic development creating new jobs and saving consumers money on energy in the nine states that currently participate According to a report released today by Environment Northeast ENE RGGI has already helped Reduce carbon pollution by almost 30 percent Cut electricity prices by 8 percent Create more than 23 000 job years of work Lock in more than 1 8 billion in long term savings on energy bills Add more than 2 4 billion in economic activity to the region When withdrawing from RGGI in 2011 Governor Christie acknowledged that climate change is real and that it is already having an impact on New Jersey but expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of the program but the facts now speak for themselves Governor Christie s fears can be put to rest said Travis Madsen Senior Program Manager for Environment America The evidence is clear RGGI works Admitting when you are wrong can be challenging but there comes a point when you cannot keep ignoring the facts said Bryk There s no question that RGGI is working exactly as planned as an economic engine and pollution cutting powerhouse Christie can keep burying his head in the sand but the people of New Jersey and the nation will not Action on climate is urgent and New Jersey residents support it Earlier this month the Obama administration released the third National Climate Assessment the most comprehensive report yet on the impacts of climate change on the United States

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/njc/gov-christie-trying-double-down-climate-inaction (2016-05-01)
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  • NJ Court: Gov. Christie Illegally Removed NJ from Climate Change Pollution Rules | Environment New Jersey Research and Policy Center
    Energy and Transportation Program Director for the Natural Resources Defense Council RGGI has been an environmental and economic success Designed by a bipartisan group of Northeastern and Mid Atlantic governors in the mid 2000s already RGGI has significantly helped reduce carbon pollution while at the same time supporting economic development creating new jobs and saving consumers money on energy Specifically since it took effect in 2009 RGGI has proven itself to be a pollution cutting economy boosting powerhouse by Helping to reduce regional climate change pollution by more than 30 percent demonstrating that states can successfully clean up climate altering pollution from power plants just as they have successfully reduced emissions of arsenic lead soot and other types of power plant pollution Creating more than 23 000 job years aka one year s worth of work in the nine remaining RGGI states Implementing energy efficiency measures that will save ratepayers of all kinds residential business and industrial more than 1 8 billion on their energy bills and Adding 2 4 billion in economic activity to the RGGI region RGGI is a perfect example of a program that has not only been good for the environment but has also provided key benefits to business said Judy Albert Executive Director of Environmental Entrepreneurs a national community of business leaders who promote sound environmental policy that builds economic prosperity It has already added over 2 4 billion in economic value to the RGGI states In addition consumers have benefitted from increased energy efficiency and lower electricity rates and bills When withdrawing from RGGI in 2011 Governor Christie acknowledged that climate change is real and that it is already having an impact on New Jersey but expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of the program but the facts now speak for the themselves Governor Christie s fears can be put to rest said Travis Madsen Senior Program Manager for Environment America The evidence is clear RGGI works RGGI can help New Jersey and other states comply with forthcoming federal standards As part of the Climate Action Plan President Obama announced last year the Environmental Protection Agency will be creating federal standards to reduce climate change pollution from power plants nationwide EPA will issue carbon pollution standards for existing power plants this June and all 50 states will be required to develop proposals to meet those standards by 2016 If they don t the EPA will develop a generic plan they can adopt In all likelihood the EPA will consider RGGI to be an appropriate compliance mechanism Last December the RGGI states submitted comments to EPA offering the RGGI program as a proven cost effective benchmark for national action Soon every state in the country is going to have to crack down on their dirty fossil fuel powers plants why not do it with a program that s proven to create jobs lower bills and boost your local economy said Bryk Broad public support for action on climate Hurricane Sandy killed more than 30 people and

    Original URL path: http://www.environmentnewjerseycenter.org/news/nje/nj-court-gov-christie-illegally-removed-nj-climate-change-pollution-rules (2016-05-01)
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