For the first time since Hurricane Sandy, the DEP is proposing changes to the regulations that oversee coastal development. Unbelievably, the rule changes do not address climate change mitigation, sea level rise, or increased storm surges. Instead they promote more growth in high hazard areas through a number of new waivers, loopholes, and exemptions.
This rule is not about more predictability, transparency, or eliminating red tape; it is about eliminating protections for our coast, allowing more sprawl and overdevelopment, and putting more people and property in harm’s way. These rules will allow for more intense development on piers and at marinas, and more commercial development behind sea walls. All this development in the wrong places means more damage to property, and tax payers spending more to fix roads, water and sewer lines, electrical infrastructure, and rebuild in high hazard areas.
The rule changes would open up some of the most high hazard areas along the coast to even more development including Mystic Island, Mantoloking, Fortesque, Port Republic, Sea Isle City, Union Beach, and Keansburg. This rule violates the FEMA rules for development in Flood Hazard areas. The rules promote growth and high density development in many communities that are looking for buyouts.
The DEP is accepting comments on these rules until August 1st and they need to hear from you. Call on the DEP to strengthen coastal protections, address the impacts of climate disruption and promote resiliency along our coast. Urge them to pull down these rules and go back to the drawing board.
Email the DEP now to help better protect our coast from future storms.
Comments on DEP Docket No.03-14-04
Dear [Decision Maker],
As New Jersey continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy, our state needs coastal regulations that protect us from the impacts of future storms through regional planning, climate change adaptation and mitigation, and programs that promote resiliency. The DEP's rule proposal moves New Jersey in the wrong direction by promoting development in high hazard areas through a number of waivers and exemptions. I urge the DEP to pull this rule down and make the needed changes to improve coastal protections.
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]