Sponsors Cite Potential Negative Impact on Crucial New Jersey Shore Economy
(TRENTON) – Assemblyman Tim Eustace has introduced legislation opposing a proposal to open portions of Atlantic Coast for oil and natural gas drilling.
The bill (ACR-227) notes that on Jan. 27, the Obama Administration proposed opening up portions of the Atlantic Coast - 50 miles offshore from Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia - for offshore oil and natural gas drilling.
The sponsor noted New Jersey’s southern coast is just 100 nautical miles from the proposed drilling area.
“With oil and natural gas reserves at an all-time high, and gasoline usage projected to drop significantly over the next few decades due to more energy-efficient automobiles, offshore drilling on the East Coast is not necessary and the risks far outweigh the rewards,” said Eustace (D-Bergen/Passaic). “Opening up portions of the Atlantic Ocean for offshore drilling would put at risk beaches, fisheries, and marine life all along the coast, and threaten ocean-based economies, such as New Jersey’s, that rely on them. The nation should be focusing its energy policy on expanding renewable energy production, rather than jeopardizing coastal economies and the environment with the extraction of more fossil fuels.”
The resolution would be transmitted by the Clerk of the General Assembly to the President of the United States, the Secretary of the United States Department of the Interior, the Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in the United States Department of the Interior, every member of Congress from the State of New Jersey and the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
The measure has been referred to Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee.