Climate adaptation follies. Part I: The New Jersey challenge

Reposted from Dr. Judith Curry’s Climate Etc.

Posted on March 7, 2021 by curryja | 

by Judith Curry

New Jersey has a sea level rise problem.  How should this be managed?

New Jersey’s peninsular geography makes it especially vulnerable to sea level rise.

The problem

Sea level is rising along the New Jersey coast, at a rate substantially higher than the global average.  Here is the data for Atlantic City, NJ (from the NOAA site):

Why is sea level rising so fast off the coast of New Jersey?

Many places in the Eastern U.S. have been sinking for thousands of years and will continue to sink for thousands more, in response to adjustments from the retreat of glacier ice following the last Ice Age. Even though the glacier ice retreated long ago, the U.S. East Coast and Great Lakes regions are still slowly sinking.

Ground water withdrawal and sediment compaction are additional factors influencing the local rate of sinking. Locations that sit atop a coastal plain, such as the Jersey Shore, are seeing the fastest rates of subsidence, since the geology of the coastal plain features more settling of the land from groundwater depletion and long-term sediment compaction. By contrast, Mid-Atlantic coastal locations that are built on top of bedrock, such as New York City, have relatively low sinking rates.

There are numerous estimates of vertical land motion along the Jersey coast.  Estimates  of vertical land motion are based on regional GPS measurements (ranging from -1.25 to -1.53 mm/yr) and by comparison of tide gauge records with observations of global sea level rise (-2.10 to -2.27 mm/yr).

U.S. East Coast sea level variability on decadal time scales has been related to changes in various components of the North Atlantic Ocean circulation, such as the Florida Current, Gulf Stream, and Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation. The U.S. Atlantic coast north of Cape Hatteras has been identified as a ‘hotspot’ of  sea level rise that has been detected since the 1970’s.  The mechanisms for producing the hot spot relate to ocean circulation patterns and also associated variations with northern hemisphere changes in glaciers and the mass balance of Greenland.

The problem for New Jersey is coastal flooding and degradation of coastal ecosystems and beach erosion.  This comes from storm tides (the most recent huge impact was from Hurricane Sandy in 2012) and also nuisance floods from high tides.  Coastal flooding degrades coastal ecosystems and erodes shorelines.  There are 2.5 million people living in 5 counties along New Jersey’s Atlantic coast. There are many oceanfront  communities, with an estimated 45,000 properties currently at risk from coastal flooding.   The Jersey Shore is a popular vacation spot.

The solution

New Jersey is being pro-active in dealing with its sea level rise problem. The NJ Department of Environmental Protection is working on a climate strategy document that should be ready by Earth Day on April 22, and as it is writing new regulations under the NJ Protecting Against Climate Threats process. The regulations are expected to place new requirements on owners of new and existing property in future flood-prone areas. 

The team of scientists at Rutgers University was engaged by the State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to identify and evaluate  the most current science on sea level rise projections and changing coastal storms, considering the implications for the practices and policies of local and regional stakeholders, and providing practical options for stakeholders to incorporate science into risk-based decision processes.

Here is a [link] to the Rutgers Report.  The punchline of the Rutgers Report is this table of sea level rise projections for New Jersey:

From the DEP:

“We have a section of our strategy right now that talks about moving to safer areas,” he said. “Retreat sounds so immediate. We know that we are going to have communities that are impacted by sea-level rise. Some of that will be addressed by civil works projects but there’s not enough money, and some of the areas don’t lend themselves to civil works projects. We’re looking at a gradual movement from fringe areas.”

“We don’t adequately price the risk of climate change right now, and what the state is rightly trying to do is to say, ‘We have to understand this risk and we have to be able to value it appropriately, and the people who are taking the risk have to be paying for it’”

The problem with the solution

The most outspoken critic of the NJ sea level rise adaptation plan is Ray Cantor, Vice President of Government Affairs for the New Jersey Business & Industry Association.  He has published two articles [link1] and [link2].  Excerpts:

<begin quote>

However, legitimate concerns about climate change, sea level rise, and flooding are not a justification to overreact and harm our economy today with draconian policies unsupported by science. Let’s look at the data on which DEP is basing its Protecting Against Climate Threats (PACT) regulatory changes.

The PACT proposals are based on a flawed, non-peer-reviewed Rutgers report, “New Jersey’s Rising Seas and Changing Coastal Storms: Report of the 2019 Science and Technical Advisory Panel,” which contained a table of sea level rise scenarios in the state through the year 2150. The DEP selected the chart’s predictions for the year 2100 – 80 years from now – assuming a sea level rise of 5.1 feet, which the report itself says has only a 17% chance of occurring.

In other words, DEP wants homeowners and businesses to comply with flood hazard regulations that assume this sea level rise is here today, not potentially 80 years in the future. Together with a concurrent proposal to subject inland areas to 500-year flood levels, which is based on no science at all, these proposed regulations will turn nearly half the state into a regulatory flood zone.

There are real world impacts to these proposals. Buildings in affected areas will have to be elevated an additional five feet. Many areas of the state, including our barrier islands, bay communities, as well as urban areas such as Hoboken, Newark, Jersey City, and Atlantic City, may become undevelopable. Even redevelopment may be made more difficult if not impossible. Homeowners and businesses whose properties never flooded before, and likely may never flood in the future, will be regulated as if they are currently underwater. Infrastructure, such as roads and bridges, will be more expensive to build.

New Jersey must not rush to impose regulations just so we can say we did something to address the threats of climate change. The stakes are too high.

But what happens if the science is not there or, perhaps worse, what if the science is weak, wrong or even ideologically driven? Should we base public policies that will have significant economic impacts on flawed scientific studies?

This is exactly the conundrum we find ourselves in as the state Department of Environmental Protection prepares to roll out its climate change proposals.

<end quote>

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March 11, 2021 2:24 pm

Pass the collection plate.

Reply to  gringojay
March 11, 2021 2:51 pm

Make her cry, please, or at least get Naomi Orekes to wear a mask permanently.

Abolition Man
Reply to  Scissor
March 12, 2021 11:44 am

That should be part of the sentence for ANY politician convicted of killing people during the ChiCom virus fiasco! Maybe we can get it for the Big Tech Nazis and assorted alarmists like Mickey Mann and St. Greta as well!?

Reply to  gringojay
March 11, 2021 6:04 pm

According to the tide gauge above, they are in the same situation as they were 50 years ago. Is it more dire? Maybe, or maybe as these are barrier islands, there are natural compensation mechanisms going on? But the fact that this is clearly a subsidence issue, means they ought to be consulting geologists, and not climatologists.

However, if they insist on going the climatology route, hopefully the recommendation is something cheap, like planting Mangrove Trees along the Jersey Shore, as they will no doubt be thriving there in a decade’s time. (If they are going to take the accelerating SLR numbers at face value, Rutgers might as well do the same with the temperature predictions.(lol)) And then do an economic forecast for Ray Cantor, based on a Manatee watching tourism future.

It is amazing to watch the ____ hit the fan when the CAGW community interacts with the real world; as it is going to be a series of Texas scenarios over and over again… until someone runs out of money. (sigh)

Last edited 1 year ago by Anon
Reply to  Anon
March 11, 2021 7:51 pm

Merely conversationally as a born Yankee, I can relay that mangrove trees would not survive the New Jersey winter temperatures & those low winter temperatures would stress manatees leading to fatality.

John F Hultquist
Reply to  gringojay
March 11, 2021 7:58 pm

You missed: “as they will no doubt be thriving there in a decade’s time. “
Global warming and CO2 can do anything.

Reply to  gringojay
March 12, 2021 8:28 am

I saw a show on animal rescues a few years ago. On one of the episodes a manatee had gotten stranded, (I forget if it was North Carolina or Virginia) as winter approached. They had to capture it and truck it back to Florida where it was rehabbed at the Tampa zoo over the winter then released in the spring.

Old Geologist
Reply to  gringojay
March 13, 2021 8:50 am

For a discussion of sea level fall in Hudson Bay area see

March 11, 2021 2:34 pm

Sea level is rising along the New Jersey coast, at a rate substantially higher than the global average.”

No it isn’t, the land is sinking. The whole article talks about the land sinking.

Reply to  Streetcred
March 11, 2021 3:57 pm

Conflating sinking soil with sea level rise is the agenda

Reply to  Catcracking
March 11, 2021 4:10 pm

….”The NJ Department of Environmental Protection is working on a climate strategy document…”….in an attempt to get carbon tax $ to pay to people who knew all along that building too close to the ocean is bad idea….

Rud Istvan
March 11, 2021 2:49 pm

Commented over at Judiths, SLR isn’t rising, New Jersey is sinking. The requisite NJ coastline policy responses to the indisputable hard causal facts differ greatly. Wind turbines will NOT help New Jersey. Different building codes and shoreline setbacks will. These are NOT fungible.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
March 12, 2021 5:55 am

Conflating issues is one of the things Warmists do best. Tell the tale however you like, but it’s Climate Change that’s the problem.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Rud Istvan
March 12, 2021 7:02 am

The NJ coast is already studded with groins that mess with the beaches and miles of sea walls that do even more damage. Sandy beaches need to be able to move with the seasons and slight rise in sea level but sea walls and encroaching construction don’t allow that to happen. Beach re-nourishment is not a viable solution, only a very expensive one.

March 11, 2021 2:51 pm

The Guardian is guarding your future climate and the latest Guardian story dwarfs NJ’s little problem – it is going to become so hot between 20 degrees latitude of the equator – heatwaves will kill unless the people have “cooling” shelters – man simply cannot withstand a wetbulb temp of XX C or higher – his sweat can no longer cool at that temp and humidity…..Oh the humanity!

Reply to  Anti-griff
March 11, 2021 8:31 pm

…..Oh the humidity!

Tired Old Nurse
March 11, 2021 2:58 pm

I thought the areas were rebounding in response to glacial ice retreat. Now I’m more confused than usual.

Reply to  Tired Old Nurse
March 11, 2021 3:10 pm

The crust of the Earth is floating on a non-compressible ‘fluid’. If one part of the crust is going up, somewhere else it’s going down.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Tired Old Nurse
March 11, 2021 3:30 pm

Two amateur geological explanations. First, as the most ice depressed regions (Maine) rebound, others further away sink—Archimedes had something to say about this. Since equilibrium is sought. As a non-geologist, I think about isostatic rebound as follows. Ice stuff sinks, pushes mantle down and outside that regioncrust rises. Former ice stuff rebounds, it sucks mantle away from that region and NJ sinks.
Second, there is a major local factor. About 33 mya, what is now about the mouth of the Chesapeake bay was hit by a major bolide. The since slumping into the impact crater further increases NJ and Norfolk VA SLR as the sides very slowly ‘slump’ into the big crater. Google can take you there.

Tired Old Nurse
Reply to  Rud Istvan
March 11, 2021 4:07 pm

Thanks to both of you. I was wrongly assuming that New Jersey was under ice rather than south of it.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
March 11, 2021 4:26 pm

I remember reading that Long Island was a glacial moraine.

Reply to  MarkW
March 12, 2021 4:08 am

That would be about right. If you follow a line from Long Island going west through northern NJ, that’s about where the glaciers ended. The Appalachian Mountains cut across the northwestern corner of the state. The northern section of NJ has a much different geology than most of the state. No sea level issues.

Reply to  MarkW
March 12, 2021 2:37 pm

Glacier scratches in Central Park. So yes Long Island probably is a moraine.

Reply to  Tired Old Nurse
March 11, 2021 4:08 pm

This was discovered decades ago: it’s all the National Geographic magazines that people have stored in their basements. They’re weighing the crust down.

Reply to  mcswelll
March 11, 2021 4:14 pm

I dumped mine in protest so that weight shifted somewhere else.

March 11, 2021 3:06 pm

You should be able to build anywhere you can get a 100 year insurance policy.

If you can find an insurance company that will pay up when you get flooded, the government is off the hook.

People will build on a flood plain unless they are prevented from so doing. For my money, that’s fine as long as the people who did the building assume the risk. You build on a flood plain and then sell the building, OK, but you’re still responsible for what happens when it floods. Something like that.

Reply to  commieBob
March 12, 2021 10:04 am

Exactly, and almost no typical modern buildings (especially in resorts) will be around that long anyway.

Reply to  commieBob
March 12, 2021 12:07 pm

what is a 100 year insurance policy?

Reply to  DonM
March 12, 2021 5:09 pm

It’s something I invented to keep people from building on flood plains.

March 11, 2021 3:07 pm

Why don’t all seaside property owners get to use Martha’s Vineyard as the ‘tipping point’ of sea level rise that triggers any response actions required?

“When they start acting like there’s a climate emergency, we can start believing there’s a climate emergency . . . “

Ron Long
March 11, 2021 3:19 pm

Land rises after glaciers melt, a process known as post-glacial rebound. The entire North American plate is tipping, up in the west and down in the east. Add in groundwater pumping and associated subsidence, and you get New Jersey. Since the Obamas bought beach front property I’m thinking the problem is overblown.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Ron Long
March 12, 2021 7:06 am

It is not just New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia are also subsiding. Lots of soft sediments on this trailing continental shelf also contribute to the problem as they slowly compact as ground water is pumped out.

Steve Case
March 11, 2021 3:21 pm

New Jersey has a sea level rise problem. How should this be managed?

Never answer a loaded question.

Reply to  Steve Case
March 12, 2021 10:06 am

Leading the witness.

March 11, 2021 3:54 pm

When you build on a swamp what do you expect.
People are still clamering to get property to build at the shore and prices are going up and up.
Cities like AC have been flooding along the Jersey Shore for over 70 years that I have observed.
New construction is now elevated to handle an occasional flood.
People are not moving!

Steve Z
March 11, 2021 4:02 pm

If the apparent sea level rise (land sinking plus actual sea level rise) is 4.12 mm/year at Atlantic City, that would be 330 mm (1.08 ft, or 13 inches) by the year 2100, or 536 mm (1.76 ft, or 21.1 inches) by the year 2150.

Where do the producers of the table get the idea that sea level will rise 3.3 ft by 2100 or 5.2 ft by 2150 (50% chance, moderate emissions), or over 3 times the current rise rate?

In order for sea level to rise by 3.3 ft (1,006 mm) by the year 2100, the average rise rate over the next 80 years would have to be 12.57 mm/yr. This would require an average acceleration in sea level rise of 0.314 mm/yr^2, or about 7.6% of the current rise rate per year. What evidence is there of any acceleration in the upper graph over the last 110 years?

Residents of the Jersey shore should plan on a linear rise in the coming years–13 inches by 2100, 21 inches by 2150, which will give everyone a longer time to prepare, with much lower construction costs.

Urban areas such as Hoboken, Jersey City, and Newark should not be off-limits for development, since most of those buildings are built on bedrock. Most of the streets of Hoboken are out of reach of sea-level rise (I went to college there). They may need some higher concrete levees along the Hudson and Passaic Rivers (and Raritan River for other cities).

Nearly 2,000 years ago, a wise man told people to build their houses on rock, not on sand, because the houses built on sand may be swept away by the sea during storms. Some residents of the Jersey shore didn’t heed His advice, and may pay the price.

Chris Hanley
March 11, 2021 4:11 pm

Atlantic City currently has a little over half the population it had in 1930 (Wiki).
In 2100 who knows what the population will be but extrapolating the trend the same way supposed future sea levels are, the population will be approaching zero anyway.

March 11, 2021 4:52 pm

I suggest a two pronged approach to solving the problem.
One, have the climate activists stick tubes into the ground and manually blow up NJ till it reaches an acceptable elevation.
Two, have the climate activists form a bucket brigade and move all the rising sea water to New York.

Andre Thomas Lewis
March 11, 2021 5:28 pm

Good article. OK so the problem here, and in other locations worldwide, is not really sea level rise but land mass sinking. Why not say so? Because sea level rise is a potent AGW meme so gets first place in any reporting.

March 11, 2021 5:34 pm

If New Jersey is so concerned about sea level rise, why are there only two tide gauges, one at Atlantic City near the southern most end of the State (rising at a rate of about 2 mm/yr after correction for sinking) and Sandy Hook at the far northern end (rising at a rate of about 1.5 mm/yr after sinking correction) with nothing in between. Neither are far apart from the average global sea level rise of about 1.6 mm/yr. If it’s thought to be a problem why not start by measuring it so they can respond from a position of truth?

March 11, 2021 5:59 pm

So NJ is sinking. Restrictions on bores taking water from the aquifer would seem sensible. But this is “Climate Seance” TM.

March 11, 2021 7:07 pm

NJ is sinking in many more ways than just the land subsiding, but that’s another story. I recall reading a few decades ago that the beach in Point Pleasant (northern Ocean County) was many hundreds of yards further to the east and well offshore in the 18th century. The land has been sinking for quite awhile – centuries. However, the marxists in NJ brazenly continue to hide that fact as well as they can, and blame human activity as the cause of sea level rise for the worsening effects of storms, coastal storms in particular. One recent study (I believe from Rutgers, possibly Stevens Tech) purported that there were many more Coastal Flood Warnings/Watches/Advisories/ Statements in the recent past as compared with a couple and few decades prior, indicating a worsening situation which requires immediate action, and of course more funding for studies and mitigation. “Extratropical Cyclone” (actually Hurricane) Sandy was supposed to be proof of this. (With the lack of data from the 1903 storm that was similar (track/intensity) to Sandy, and the relative lack of population and infrastructure, it’s unknown whether similar effects were incurred a century prior. But, I would postulate that they were reasonably similar.) Of course, without any knowledge of the previous generations of NWS policies, approaches to, and management of product issuance, these researchers were blissfully unaware that coastal products were much more limited decades ago, partly because of the state of the art as well as the lack of a serious approach by the agency then, but especially because of the paucity of data and real-time reports. It’s too bad the younger researchers are so lacking in history and knowledge.

John Pickens
March 11, 2021 7:29 pm

“Superstorm” Sandy was a nasty storm which wrecked many, many coastal homes in New Jersey. But, lo and behold, within 3 years the vast majority of homes had been rebuilt. Most homes which had ground level first floors were raised up on pilings, making the first floor seven feet or more higher than they were before.

Many people got zero insurance money, but they rebuilt anyway. It seems that those who can afford a Jersey Shore home really, really like it there, and will pay to keep it.

Rutgers and the DEP should leave the shore alone. The people living there are doing just fine, and will adapt as necessary.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Pickens
Reply to  John Pickens
March 12, 2021 8:36 am

“Superstorm” Sandy was in many ways a perfect storm. Many things had to come together to make the storm as destructive as it was.
First there was a standard Nor’easter, that managed to collide with a cold front at precisely the right time and place in order to add energy.
Then it came assure at the perfect place to concentrate all that wind and tidal action into a small area.
Finally it occurred at the height of a King tide.

Had Sandy been a hurricane, it would have barely qualified as a category 1.
Finally from historical records, storms such as Sandy have hit that region about every 120 to 150 years.

John Pickens
Reply to  MarkW
March 12, 2021 8:46 am

Case in point, the 1944 Great Atlantic Hurricane.
It easily caused many times the damage of Sandy, and would have been far worse it it hit the more populous region today.

From Wikipedia:
The hurricane was infamous for the amount of damage it caused along the New Jersey coastline. The shore towns on Long Beach Island, as well as BarnegatAtlantic CityOcean City, and Cape May all suffered major damage. Long Beach Island, Barnegat Island and Brigantine all lost their causeways to the mainland in the storm effectively cutting them off from the rest of New Jersey. Additionally both islands lost hundreds of homes, in particular the Harvey Cedars section of Long Beach Island where many homes in the town were swept out to sea. In Atlantic City the hurricane’s storm surge forced water into the lobbies of many of the resorts famous hotels. The Atlantic City boardwalk suffered major damage along with the Boardwalk Hall Auditorium Organ and the city’s famous ocean piers. Both the famed Steel Pier and Heinz Pier were partially destroyed by the hurricane with only the Steel Pier getting rebuilt. Ocean City and Cape May also lost many homes in the storm with Ocean City’s boardwalk suffering significant damage.

Reply to  MarkW
March 12, 2021 6:17 pm

Actually, Sandy really was a borderline Cat 1 hurricane when it made landfall, as it was warm core as indicated by rising temperatures at a couple of observation sites near the center. And, from my perspective, it was a kind of a run of the mill high end TS or Cat 1 hurricane. The problem was the track, which was onshore, worsening the storm surge. The 1944 hurricane was much stronger than Sandy, with a track paralleling the coast, centered just offshore. The same storm today, as noted, would be much more devastating than Sandy, probably. One day, we will see a replica of the hurricane of (IIRC) 1821, which was probably a Cat 4 or 5 with the eye moving up where the Garden State Parkway now exists. That one will be an eye-opener. Of course it will be due to climate weirding…

John F Hultquist
March 11, 2021 8:16 pm

Everybody in NJ should move to California. Following Hank Johnson (Guam fame),
The CA coast would go down and the east coast up.
Problem solved.

Abolition Man
Reply to  John F Hultquist
March 11, 2021 9:25 pm

I wish they’d hurry up! I’ve been sitting here on the continental divide meditating and I feel like I’m listing a little to starboard!

Last edited 1 year ago by Abolition Man
Reply to  Abolition Man
March 12, 2021 3:57 am

Are you facing north or south?

Abolition Man
Reply to  Oldseadog
March 12, 2021 11:36 am

If you can’t tell you’re gonna have to change your screen name 🤪

March 11, 2021 9:32 pm

Falsehoods, fallacies and outright lies. Cantor must be deeply invested in New Jersey alarmism.

All of New Jersey is very well draining soil that used to be perfect for agriculture.
e.g. Campbell’s tomatoes for their tomato soups were major crops in New Jersey.

That is, New Jersey has been under ocean waters in the past and likely will again in the future.
Though perhaps not this interglacial

Considering their allegations for land subsidence on top of sea level rise, I’m puzzled why the Cape May and Wildwood jetties/sand traps fail to show such subsidence and rising waters… Perhaps, they are jacking up the jetties during winter?

A jetty fisherman gets plenty of time to study the rocks they sit upon, from low tide through high tide and back to low…

A five foot dike would protect Jersey for centuries at observed sea level rise. If the next glacial returns, then New Jersey is at their high water mark.

Fresh water extraction is a problem.

Reply to  ATheoK
March 12, 2021 8:39 am

It does look like the current warm period may be running out of steam.
World wide, temperatures have been falling for the last 5 to 6 thousand years. Interrupted by warm spells every 1000 years or so. The Minoan, Egyptian, Roman, Medieval and now Modern warm periods. Each cooler and shorter than the previous.

Last edited 1 year ago by MarkW
March 12, 2021 1:21 am

You notice a common line of totally irrational reasoning on these matters. Its worth calling it out whenever it appears.

The argument is essentially that we (whoever we are) are at risk from some alleged consequence of global warming and should “therefore” take some local measures to reduce our emissions.

There is never any coherent argument to show that our local risks are directly caused by the amount of global warming that has been measured, or that these local measures will have any effect at all on the global problem.

There is thus no argument showing that the local measures will have any effect on the local problem that supposedly motivates them.


1) Threat, the Texas example: the latest deep freeze.

2) The argument is that this is the consequence of global warming or cooling. However, no causal connection is every proved.

There is no evidence that the recent Texas cold spell was caused by the amount of global warming that we have seen so far.

3) The next step is to argue that what’s needed for Texas to prevent this danger is for Texas to install more wind and solar.

There being no evidence either that this will lower Texan emissions by any amount, let along by an amount sufficient to have any effect on the global total of emissions.

Similar arguments visible in the UK. Lets all go to electric cars by 2035. Because of some winter or summer ‘extreme’ weather. No evidence that this weather has been caused by the amount of warming, either global or local, that has actually been measured. Paul Homewood very good on this. But it gets worse.

The UK accounts for 1% or so of emissions. Going electric will not reduce its emissions materially. Even if it did, the UK is not large enough that doing so would have any effect on global emissions.

What is needed is for people to call out every forum in which this crazed argument appears. Its fundamentally as rational as a possible Maldives argument: global warming is going to raise sea levels and put us under the waves, therefore we in the Maldives need to go carbon neutral by 2025.

A total non-sequitur. It is not a rational reaction to the supposed problem. Lets all stand our heads before breakfast. It will have just as much effect.

Actually the same situation applies to the US as a whole. The US is too small an economy now for any reductions it makes to have any global effects. And the ones who are really going for it and increasing their emissions – China and India – there is every evidence they don’t actually believe in global warming or the CO2 connexion. If they did, they’d be behaving very differently.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  michel
March 12, 2021 7:14 am


The late Prof David MacKay of Cambridge University calculated that if all the homes in the UK were powered exclusively by unreliable renewables it would reduce UK CO2 emissions by only 4%. See his excellent book ‘Sustainable Energy – without the hot air’ UIT Cambridge 2009

March 12, 2021 4:22 am

“Follies” is right. You don’t understand what’s going on without knowing about the governor’s (Phil Murphy) wife, Tammy. This is all about politics.

“The governor told NJ Advance Media that his wife has “become a driving force on the issues that matter most to her” — particularly the environment, an area where he said “she has a wealth of valuable insight.”

Tammy Murphy is a founding member of the Climate Reality Project, the group founded by former Vice President Al Gore. She is also the group’s secretary.

During a campaign appearance for Phil Murphy in October in Ocean Township, Gore called Tammy Murphy “one of the smartest, most articulate, most committed environmental advocates that I’ve ever run across.”

“Just imagine what a first lady for New Jersey she will be to protect your clear air, your clean water, and to clean up all the disasters that nature is throwing at us these days,” Gore said.
Tammy Murphy has also spoken at a few news conferences focused on the environment in recent weeks — including a January event in which her husband signed an executive order for New Jersey to rejoin the Regional Greenhouse Grass Initiative.

“The threat of climate change isn’t going away,” she said during the event in Highlands. “But that doesn’t mean we do nothing. We can fight back.”

Yes, Tammy has a “wealth of valuable insight”, with her degree in communications and English from the University of Virginia. Just clueless about science and thinks it is all about the climate, not NJ’s naturally sinking coastal geology. Ask Al.

Last edited 1 year ago by BobM
Reply to  BobM
March 12, 2021 11:32 am

Greenhouse grass initiative? Would that be maryjo?

March 12, 2021 4:37 am

>>The NJ Department of Environmental Protection is working on a climate strategy document <<

that’ll fix it, by gum! Maybe Griff / Loydo can hep ‘em write it, those boys is downright articalate.

Laurence Zensinger
March 12, 2021 5:15 am

I grew up in Northern NJ and spent a couple of weeks each summer at the “shore” in Ocean City. Ocean City has been fighting the problem of “beach erosion” for at least 60 years. As a kid I remember of Corps of Engineers project that pumped sand from the bay to the ocean side of the island to replenish the beach. One issue which is not discussed is that barrier islands are constantly shifting, either eroding or accreting depending upon coastal currents as well as subsidence and SLR. The landward “migration” of barrier islands on the East Coast of the US, is well known to coastal geomorphologists and has been well documented long before anyone blamed AGW and CO, and attempts to arrest this migration through beach nourishment programs have been costly and generally futile for many decades.

March 12, 2021 5:28 am

Fighting against “climate change and rising seas” sounds so much better than “adapting to sinking New Jersey”. At least from the politician point of view.

March 12, 2021 6:23 am

So, land subsidence, not sea level rise. That clearly should be in the title.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
March 12, 2021 7:20 am

There is entirely too much reliance on technological solutions to the subsidence problem along the US Atlantic coast. Left to their own devices, sandy barrier islands will simply migrate landward or extend seaward as conditions allow. It is only when this completely natural process is blocked by sea walls and construction that “must be saved” does the system fail. Then beaches erode and humans step in with re-nourishment projects that cost millions for the temporary fix provided.

March 12, 2021 7:58 am

Seems clear to me that the only possible solution is to ban all oil and coal from NJ entirely, immediately. The changes in emissions will reduce the weight of the atmosphere over NJ and stop pushing the land down into the ocean.

(hmm, I wonder if I can get funding for a “study” about that…)

Jim Whelan
March 12, 2021 8:25 am

This is a bit of a nit but New Jersey has a lot of great sea-side amusement parks so why use a picture of the Santa Moinica Pier in California (one of the lamest sea-side amusement parks around) to head the story. I know there are plenty of stock photos of the New Jersey parks available.

Sorry for that but I love amusement parks.

Peter Morris
March 12, 2021 9:21 am

It’s a make work scam. New Jersey is as corrupt as the day is long. That report is generated to build the framework on which massive public works will be requested. The usual parties will skim off the tip and kick it back to the ladies abs gents that voted it all into place. Construction will be substandard and anyone trying to bring actual light to the situation will be hushed up.

Make no mistake. These people aren’t True Believers. They see a scam they can exploit to their benefit. It’s how the entire state government works.

March 12, 2021 9:37 am

From article:

New Jersey has a sea level rise erosion problem. How should this be managed?


James Mason
March 12, 2021 12:44 pm

Question for Judith or Charles: Would you happen to know or be able to find out why the NOAA Relative Sea Level Trend data ends in early 2020? I checked a number of other stations on their website and found the same thing. Did NOAA stop tracking sea level trends in early 2020 or is it just that their website is 12 months out of date? It would be great to have up-to-date sea level trends because the trends to early 2020 are all essentially linear and none show the acceleration in sea level rise that has been so widely predicted.

Last edited 1 year ago by James Mason
Walter Sobchak
March 12, 2021 6:41 pm

“these proposed regulations will turn nearly half the state into a regulatory flood zone.”

An iron rice bowl for corrupt New Jersey public officials.

I know that the phrase “corrupt New Jersey Public officials” has many layers of redundancy in it.

I can think of no other state that more richly deserves to have its economy destroyed than New Jersey.

Maureen from Regina
March 13, 2021 5:50 am

So the problem appears to be that the experts haven’t figured out the problem – is it sea levels rising or land sinking? There probably is more evidence that land in North America is continuing to sink, but that can’t be blamed on climate change (yet – but wait for it), so no money in researching that.

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