Monday, December 5, 2016

Results of 2nd Annual Survey of Attitudes on Energy in NJ

Stockton, NJ (November 14, 2016) – ReThink Energy NJ, a campaign dedicated to reducing fossil fuel use and bringing clean, renewable energy to New Jersey, today released the results of a new poll conducted by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind™ that shows New Jerseyans continue to very strongly support clean, renewable energy over fossil fuels; want the state to switch more quickly to those sources; and have concerns about harm from pipelines. “We’re proud to stand with hardworking New Jerseyans who want what’s best for their families and their state,” said Tom Gilbert, campaign director, ReThink Energy NJ and New Jersey Conservation Foundation. “It’s time to stop putting utility company profits over the common-sense energy needs of our state. Moving to clean, renewable energy sources like wind and solar will create more jobs and healthier communities for our families.”

The five key poll takeaways are:

•         87% believe investing in renewable energy is “very” or “somewhat” important to the overall health of New Jersey, including 96% of Democrats, 83% of Republicans, and 82% of Independents.
•         Given a choice of two opposing statements, nearly two-thirds (61%) believe pipelines threaten New Jersey, and only one third (32%) believe they help, virtually unchanged from the last study.
•         71% say it is more important for the state to invest in clean energy sources than in fossil fuels (20%), with 63% believing the state is developing and adopting renewable energy too slowly.
•         Overall, 75% favor New Jersey’s next Governor moving to the higher goal of sourcing 30% of energy from renewable sources by 2020 and 50% by 2030.
•         68% favor a target of 80% renewable energy in the state by 2050.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Welcome Aboard, Mae Henry!

Meet Lauren “Mae” Henry, Clean Ocean Action’s recently-hired Marine Program Associate. Mae has an M.A, in Marine Conservation and Policy from Stoney Brook University and a B.S. in Marine Biology and Conservation from the University of North Carolina, Wilmington.

Mae has previously worked as an Environmental Educator for the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife at Sedge Island, off Island Beach State Park, and as a National Youth Program Intern for Surfrider Foundation. She has experience in program development and promotion, event planning, social media relations, website management and in the creation of imaginative presentations. Mae has also been an eco-tour kayak guide, water quality researcher, and surfing instructor for autistic children.

At COA, Mae Henry will work on watershed pollution prevention programs and assist with Beach Sweeps along the Delaware River, as well as other marine protection actions.

In Mae’s words, “At COA I look forward to speaking proudly as an advocate for a cause so close to my heart. I look to reconnect communities and future generations to the sea through a better understanding of the link to our everyday lives, and the realization that polluted waterways are not reflective of the way we should be treating our most valuable asset.”

COA Launches Watershed Mindfullness Education Initiative

On November 30th Clean Ocean Action launched its Watershed Mindfulness Education Initiative at the last Rally for the Navesink meeting of 2016 held at the Monmouth Boat Club. Representatives from school communities in the Navesink watershed attended the meeting to learn how their schools can improve local water quality.

Photo courtesy of Charlie Komar
Clean Ocean Action is promoting Watershed Mindfulness – an understanding that we are all connected to and responsible for the health of our vast network of waterways, which ultimately lead to the ocean. Watershed Mindfulness is a state of awareness that we live in a network of waterways that connect communities to a larger body of water, the ocean, and we are all responsible for keeping it healthy. COA seeks to engage the education community to help connect the drops and bring Watershed Mindfulness into K-12 curriculum.

Tanya Oznowich from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) spoke about the Next Generation Science Standards and the collaborative work that her department has done with the New Jersey Department of Education (DOE) and the Alliance of New Jersey Environmental Educators (ANJEE).

School community members were encouraged to sign up to participate in future collaborations with Rally for the Navesink in the hopes of creating Professional Learning Communities (PLC) in their schools and beyond.  The goal of the PLC would be to provide opportunities to regularly articulate with colleagues about Watershed Mindfulness lessons. Rally for the Navesink looks forward to working closely with educators in their endeavor to create the next generation of Navesink River stewards.

If you are connected with a school community in the Navesink Watershed and are interested in helping the Rally connect its message to your school, please contact Amanda Wheeler at Clean Ocean Action at citizens@cleanoceanaction.org or 732-872-0111. Presentations can be found at CleanOceanAction.org. (See additional Navesink story on cover.)

Red Bank Business Alliance Holiday Soiree

On November 17th, the Red Bank Business Alliance hosted the First Annual Holiday Soiree at the Molly Pitcher Inn. COA was honored to be a beneficiary of the event which helped raise funds for the Rally for the Navesink campaign.

Throughout the night guests enjoyed delicious dinner selections and desserts from local Red Bank restaurants, live music, a silent auction and more! It was inspiring to see the community, local businesses, and elected officials come together to host this fun event.

COA extends a special thank you to all who organized, sponsored and attended the event.

Thank You to the Red Bank Business Alliance for hosting the First Annual Red Bank Holiday Soiree! Happy Holidays from Everyone at COA!