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NJ Bans Off-Shore Drilling in State Waters; Gov. Murphy’s Clear Rebuke to Big Oil and Trump Administration’s Atlantic Attack

For Immediate Release

Statement from Environment New Jersey Director Doug O’Malley on the signing by Gov. Phil Murphy this morning of legislation to ban off-shore drilling in state waters as well as to prohibiting the permitting of any off-shore drilling infrastructure, during a signing ceremony along the boardwalk in Point Pleasant:

“The Trump Administration’s outrageous attack on our beaches and oceans up and down the Atlantic seaboard has already generated tremendous public pushback. This bipartisan chorus of opposition has been fierce in New Jersey, where the state has worked to protect our 127 miles of beaches along the Jersey Shore, from myriad threats from medical waste to our ongoing recovery from Hurricane Sandy. 

Today, New Jersey is clearing telling the Trump Administration and Big Oil to get the hell off the beach and the waters of New Jersey. Off-shore drilling is dirty and dangerous and is now officially banned in state waters. Gov. Murphy has been a welcome antidote to the environmental rollbacks of the Trump Administration and this bill ensures that Big Oil will never put its oily infrastructure on our state waters and beaches. There couldn’t be a clearer message from Gov. Murphy that off-shore drilling isn’t welcome in our state. The nearly unanimous passage of this legislation through both houses of the New Jersey Legislature also speaks volumes to the massive public opposition of drilling.

On this 8th anniversary of the BP Deepwater disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, off-shore drilling is still dangerous, dirty and is guaranteed to deliver oil spills. Off-shore drilling also represents a clear and present danger to efforts to fight climate change – drilling the hole deeper only sets us back more in the efforts to slow the rising of our seas. Even Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, during an appearance in New Jersey earlier this month at an off-shore wind conference, acknowledged the tremendous pushback to off-shore drilling in states like New Jersey had been heard from the Trump Administration. Today’s bill signing by Gov. Murphy is clear mark that New Jersey is charging the ramparts of the Trump Administration’s attack on our oceans – we hope other states join us in efforts to stop off-shore drilling anywhere along the Atlantic seaboard to ensure that an oil spill never reaches the Jersey Shore.

Earth Day, which will be celebrated on Sunday, was founded nearly 50 years ago because of the massive public outrage to the Santa Barbara oil spill off the coast of California in 1969.  Nearly 50 years later, we are still fighting Big Oil – but we are one step closer to keeping their hands off the Jersey Shore.”