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Off-Shore drilling protests planned across New Jersey on Saturday

Many environmental groups aren’t happy with President Donald Trump’s plan to begin off-shore oil and gas drilling in the Atlantic Ocean, and they plan to vent their frustrations and fears on Saturday in a national day of protest including spots in New Jersey.

Assemblywoman Caroline Casgrande, State Senator Jennifer Beck and Cindy Zipf, Executive Director, Clean Ocean Action (Vin Ebenau, Townsquare Media)
Assemblywoman Caroline Casgrande, State Senator Jennifer Beck and Cindy Zipf, Executive Director, Clean Ocean Action (Vin Ebenau, Townsquare Media)

Following a battle that lasted the near entirety of the Obama Administration, Clean Ocean Action Executive Director Cindy Zipf says they’re dissatisfied with Trump’s plan and are fulled fueled to fight this proposal once again.

“We’re still opposed to off-shore drilling…it doesn’t make sense,” said Zipf. “A clean ocean economy depends on a clean ocean.”

She believes off-shore drilling would harm sea life and may even keep tourists away from New Jersey,” and people coming to the restaurants to eat the beautiful fish that we have,” adds Zipf. “These all depend on a clean ocean and an oily based economy is not acceptable.”

It’s not just cleaning up New Jersey and making it safe here, she adds, but also ensuring the entire nation is doing what’s best for the ocean economy.

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“We have this New York-New Jersey harbor where we have a lot of oil tankers and chemical tankers coming in and out, so we want to make sure we put them in the right location,” said Zipf.

She adds in its place, a more effective and safe step to take is ensuring energy conservation measures are being utilized.

“It also saves us hundreds if not thousands of dollars a year,” said Zipf. “(We need to) prioritize energy conservation and move into the alternative green energy economies.”

These demonstrations are more than just standing outside and voicing opposition to the issue, she adds, it’s about raising awareness for more safe measures to be taken.

“We’re in the 21st-century now and we need to move beyond these old, ancient sources of fossil fuel energy,” said Zipf who adds it’s the reason why energy conservation needs to take presidence.

It’s also about raising awareness off-shore drilling can do in harming the hearing and livelihood of marine life.

“Death has occurred and certainly hearing loss has occurred,” said Zipf. “Marine mammals are obviously impacted and are frightened by that sound. They scatter away.”

She adds that harming the marine life can also cause a detrimental effect to the fishing industry because causing that kind of impact to the fish or illness would make them unsavory to fisherman.

Protest demonstrations are being set up at 25th Street and The Beach in Barnegat Light, North Atlantic and 3rd Street in Beach Haven, Third Avenue in Bradley Beach, Beach Access at Laird Street in Long Branch, Beesley’s Point Beach in Marmora, and Riverfront Park in Point Pleasant.

The Bradley Beach demonstration is named “Hands Across the Sand 2017,” and you can learn more on their Facebook page with the event beginning at 12 pm where The Surfrider Foundation and the New Jersey Sierra Club will join alongside about 60 concerned citizens.

“We’re coming out and standing together to protect our oceans from offshore drilling,” said Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club. “We must explore new technologies for wind and wave power and remove obstacles that stand in the way of clean energy. Together we are joining Hands Across the Sand to stand up for protecting our coasts and say NO to offshore drilling.”

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