I sent a letter to the Biden Administration this week demanding real solutions in response to the death of marine mammals off New Jersey’s coast. We must do more to address vessel strikes and entanglements – the major cause of the deaths. I requested information from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on what the agency is doing to enforce vessel speed, limit entanglements, and reduce microplastic pollution that marine mammals swallow when feeding.
In the letter, I highlighted the threat the climate crisis poses to marine mammals and their habitats. As the temperature of the Atlantic Ocean rises due to greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel energy, marine mammals’ prey has moved farther north and closer to shore where they are more likely to be put at risk of human activity. As whales move with their food source, they are entering an active area of significant commercial activity, including shipping superhighways servicing the Port of New York and New Jersey, which moves more cargo than any other container port in the country.
This is exactly why we need to continue to transition to renewable energy sources.
The fossil fuel industry is funding attempts to blame offshore wind pre-construction activity for marine mammal deaths without scientific evidence. This not only threatens our transition to emission-free clean energy sources that are necessary to help maintain healthy marine habitats and provide New Jerseyans with good-paying union jobs, but also distracts the public and policymakers from real solutions. Read more here
My Opposition to an Anti-LGBTQI+ BillI voted against a bill this week that would codify discrimination against trans girls in schools. This bill is just another fear mongering tactic designed to prevent trans girls from participating school sports teams and deprive them of an important opportunity to be part of their community. Trans and intersex kids deserve access to the same educational opportunities, including participating in sports. This bill would strip trans girls of all ages of these opportunities and would limit opportunities for intersex students as well. Anti-LGBTQI+ Republicans refuse to work with Democrats real gender equity issues and are merely use “protecting women” as an excuse for targeting trans and other LGBTQI+ kids for discrimination.Federal Funding to Support New Jersey’s Coastal Resiliency,
The Biden Administration announced new awards today to make coastal communities and ecosystems more resilient by protecting them from the economic and physical impacts of climate change and pollution. New Jersey will receive $5.2 million for living shorelines projects as well as marine debris and microplastics work, which can harm marine life like whales. Living shoreline infrastructure projects use natural materials and systems, including dunes, wetlands, and oyster reefs to support the natural flood resilience of healthy shoreline ecosystems.The New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium in my district will receive $284,969 to develop curriculums on marine debris and expand environmental literacy outreach to school districts in underserved communities. I have long advocated for more federal funding to promote coastal resiliency, and I fought to secure this funding in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act to protect the Jersey Shore from the impacts of climate change.
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or call my offices directly if you have questions or need help with a federal agency:
Middlesex County: 732-249-8892
Monmouth County: 732-571-1140