SENATE, No. 258

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

PRE-FILED FOR INTRODUCTION IN THE 2018 SESSION

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  JEFF VAN DREW

District 1 (Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Prohibits offshore drilling in State waters and issuance of DEP permits and approvals for activities associated with offshore drilling.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     Introduced Pending Technical Review by Legislative Counsel.

  


An Act concerning offshore drilling for oil and natural gas and supplementing Title 13 of the Revised Statutes. 

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, rule, or regulation to the contrary, offshore drilling for oil or natural gas shall be prohibited in State waters.  The Department of Environmental Protection shall not issue any permit or other approval pursuant to the "Coastal Area Facility Review Act," P.L.1973, c.185 (C.13:19-1 et seq.), R.S.12:5-3, the federal "Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972," 16 U.S.C. s.1451 et seq., or any other State or federal law, rule, or regulation, for the development of any facility, or related infrastructure, associated with offshore drilling for oil or natural gas, whether proposed for in State waters or outside of State waters. 

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately. 

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill would prohibit offshore drilling for oil or natural gas in State waters and prohibit the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) from issuing any permits and approvals for the development of any facility, or related infrastructure, associated with offshore drilling in State waters or outside State waters.

     On April 28, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order No. 13795 entitled "Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy."  This executive order seeks to encourage oil and natural gas production off the Atlantic coast.  Opening up the Atlantic Ocean for offshore drilling would put at risk beaches, fisheries, and marine life all along the coast.  An oil spill, like the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil spill of 2010 in Louisiana, would damage the fragile marine ecosystem, kill off endangered and threatened species of fish and wildlife, and poison the many types of fish and shellfish that New Jersey residents and visitors eat and harvest for sale.  It would also cause catastrophic and lasting economic harm to the Jersey Shore, which supports a tourism industry worth $38 billion annually, and reduce the quality of life for New Jersey's residents.  Consequently, it is in the best interests of this State to prohibit offshore drilling for oil or natural gas.