April 20, 2018 - Rep. Smith praised the passage of New Jersey’s STOP Offshore Oil and Gas Act at a bipartisan press conference in Point Pleasant today. An article published in NorthJersey.com explains that the new law bans drilling for oil and natural gas in state waters.
“Seldom has any issue united” New Jersey residents and state and federal lawmakers as the offshore drilling proposal has, said Rep. Smith.
“’There now is an impediment, there is now a law that makes it almost impossible’ to drill, Smith said, ‘because if you don’t have the infrastructure and the pipelines going out to the federal side, how do you do it? It just can’t be done.’”
The following text includes excerpts from the NorthJersey.com article. Click here to read the full article.
Drilling for oil and natural gas in state waters is now banned after Gov. Phil Murphy signed one of the strongest deterrents yet to President Donald Trump’s controversial plan to open the Atlantic Ocean to energy resource exploration…
The opposition to Trump’s proposal to open nearly all offshore waters to drilling has been bipartisan. New Jersey’s 130-mile coastline is a huge driver of the state’s tourism and economy, supporting about 830,000 jobs and attracting nearly 100 million people a year, according to the state…
As a symbol of the bipartisan backlash to the drilling plan, Murphy and fellow Democrats who sponsored the bill were joined by Rep. Chris Smith, R-Mercer, and Republican freeholders from Monmouth and Ocean counties. Smith, who has served in Congress for 38 years, said “seldom has any issue united” residents and state and federal lawmakers in New Jersey as the drilling proposal has.
The bill, A-839, is known as the Shore Tourism and Ocean Protection from Offshore Oil and Gas ACT — or STOP Offshore Oil and Gas Act. It takes effect immediately.
The new law bans drilling for oil and natural gas in state waters, but the state’s sovereignty only extends three miles from the coast; the rest is under the jurisdiction of the federal government. But the law also prohibits pipeline or other infrastructure used to transport oil or natural gas from federal waters or from other states to New Jersey.
“There now is an impediment, there is now a law that makes it almost impossible” to drill, Smith said, “because if you don’t have the infrastructure and the pipelines going out to the federal side, how do you do it? It just can’t be done.” …
Click here to read the full article on NorthJersey.com’s website.
Excerpted and emphasis added.