Thursday, August 23, 2012

Are Barnegat Bay fixes ignoring an overriding problem?

The recent Rutgers University report on the deteriorating health of New Jersey's
Barnegat Bay focused media attention, 
once again, on the decades-old
environmental problem that continues to elude a 

That's not to say that numerous 'fixes' haven't been implemented, negotiated or proposed.

For  thorough coverage of environmental news, issues, legislation and regulation in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, try a 
FREE subscription to EnviroPolitics, our daily newsletter that also tracks environment/energy bills--from introduction to enactment

New Jersey now has 
the toughest fertilizer law in the nation restricting the amount of nitrogen and phosphates in that bag of stuff you use to green-up your lawn.

The state has
negotiated an early closure of the Oyster Creek nuclear power plant, the facility that continues to raise the Bay's temperature.

And several bills have been introduced in the state legislature to stem the flow into the Bay of nutrients that lower the Bay's oxygen, 
spur algal blooms, and chase away clams, barnacles and sea grass while attracting stinging jelly fish.

Governor Christie has responded with his own 10 Point plan, and environmental organizations have held listening sessions to stimulate discussion and among bay area residents and commercial interests. 

Despite all this positive activity, a nagging question persists.

Do all the proffered solutions
 work busily around the edges of an happily ignored 500-pound political and economic gorilla of a problem? 

In an
Op-Ed today in NJ Spotlight, American Littoral Society Executive Director 
Tim Dillingham, writes that a 
"side-by-side comparison of problems and proposed solutions -- whether in the governor’s plan, DEP initiatives, legislative proposals, or the land use and environmental policies of Ocean County and local municipalities -- shows a significant disconnect between the fact that overdevelopment and urbanization are the primary drivers of the Bay’s problems." 

Care to share your thoughts on Barnegat Bay's problems and cures? Use the opinion box below. If one is not visible, activate it by clicking on the tiny 'comments' link.

Subscribe here to view all our YouTube videos

Repost this article