New Jersey Revised Statutes § 13:19-34 - Findings, Declarations Relative To Coastal, Ocean Resources.

13:19-34 Findings, declarations relative to coastal, ocean resources.

1.The Legislature finds and declares that:

a.The quality of life and strength of the economy in New Jersey are challenged by persistent threats to the health and vitality of one of the State's most cherished and fragile assets, its ocean resources;

b.Coastal tourism is extremely important to the State economy, generating billions of dollars annually and providing thousands of jobs throughout the region;

c.Good water quality, healthy beaches, and abundant recreational opportunities are essential to attracting visitors and sustaining coastal tourism;

d.Despite regulatory efforts by the State to date, New Jersey residents continue to face beach closings, seafood health advisories, and prohibitions on shellfishing in some areas due to pollution;

e.Reports such as the 2003 Pew Oceans Commission Report, entitled "America's Living Oceans: Charting a Course for Sea Change," and the 2004 Report of the United States Commission on Ocean Policy, both document degraded ocean values, due to coastal and ocean development, onshore and offshore pollution, certain fishing and aquaculture practices, and invasive species, among other things;

f.The ocean is a public trust and in order to ensure the protection of the public trust, the governance of these ocean resources should be guided by principles of sustainability, ecosystem health, precaution, recognition of the interconnectedness between land and ocean, and public participation in the decision-making process;

g.The Pew Oceans Commission and the United States Commission on Ocean Policy both recommend that government agencies move toward an ecosystem-based management approach and should be required to protect, maintain, and restore coastal and ocean ecosystems;

h.Good governance and stewardship of coastal and ocean resources necessitate more efficient and effective use of public funds; and

i.Since many different State and local agencies are responsible for governing or protecting New Jersey's coastal and ocean resources, there is a critical need for these agencies to work together in a coordinated manner to ensure effective, comprehensive, and consistent protection of coastal and ocean resources and ecosystems.

L.2007, c.288, s.1.

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Last modified: October 11, 2016