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Cartoon Made Martin Do It!

[Update: May 2, 2010 -Bergen Record editorial:

Cleaner water

Martin’s new opinion came about after he was embarrassed publicly. The Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility released e-mails sent to Martin from the EPA that made clear that even if the agency imposed a limit, 6 1/2 years could elapse before the rule was in place, Staff Writer James O’Neill reported. Martin would have been playing Russian roulette with the public’s health.

Perchlorate is linked to thyroid dysfunction. In fetuses and infants (through formula or breast milk), high levels of perchlorate can cause developmental delays and learning disabilities. No parent would ever choose to give perchlorate-laced juice to a baby, and no pregnant woman would ever drink a caffeine-free beverage if she knew it included a rocket-fuel additive.

The previous commissioner had proposed a sensible perchlorate limit of 5 parts per billion, far below a possible federal limit. The state limit would leave it in a good position if later scientists find that even 15 parts per billion is too high.

Martin has not said what the perchlorate limit will be. We know what it should be: 5 parts per billion.

Today’s Top News

(Cartoon taken down – posted without permission. I just found out that artists freelance and need to get paid (in addition to their day job salary)-  guess I’m one of those naive anti-property rights folks who see art as part of the human conversation and political landscape – but I can’t afford to pay for Margulies for his cartoon, so go see it here:)

Today’s Bergen Record reports that DEP Commissioner Bob Martin – just weeks after killing DEP’s proposed drinking water standard for the chemical perchlorate – will propose a standard “as quickly as possible”.

(see: Perchlorate limits to be set for water another killer story by Jim O’Neill)

We’d like to thank Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono (D-Middlesex) for aggressively opposing Martin’s action to kill the DEP proposal and demanding that he act to protect NJ residents.  Martin’s U-turn shows that legislative oversight can work (see Buono’s website post here).

And Martin and Lt. Governor “Red Tape” “Regulatory Czar” Guadagno need to get their cover stories straight. First the pretext for killing the proposal was to wait for EPA to propose a standard “this summer”. Then it shifted to the need for cost benefit analysis. And then it was blamed on the allegedly “shoddy” DEP science and “no data” to show health risks.

But, at the end of the day, it wasn’t the Bergen Record’s harsh press coverage, Senator Buono, the PEER criticism, the science, the EPA, or the non-existent cost–benefit analysis – we all really know that the cartoon made Martin do it!

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  1. May 5th, 2010 at 09:04 | #1

    From the Assembly Democrats Facebook page yesterday:

    Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula on Tuesday announced the Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee will hear testimony on the state’s energy master plan, including a review of work to meet its goals and an assessment of what further needs to be done.

    “New Jersey’s successful clean energy programs have been hit hard by Gov. Christie, threatening economic development and our goal of making New Jersey more energy independent and a leader in building a green economy,” said Chivukula (D-Somerset/Middlesex). who chairs the panel. “It’s time to assess where we stand, where we go from here to minimize the damage and what further work needs to be done to meet our goals.”

    The hearing to take testimony from invited guests is set for 10 a.m. Thursday, May 6 in Committee Room 9 in the State House Annex in Trenton.

    It will be streamed live at http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/media/live_audio.asp.

    I want to hear them demand hard, indisputable facts from Martin about how he plans to meet the goals of the Plan once he and Christie gut all the means to implement it.

  2. Bill Wolfe
    May 5th, 2010 at 09:17 | #2

    Thanks Rob – I agree – the Committee should demand a detailed workplan, with specific timetables for outputs and resources (staff and budget).

    But I hope the focus is not limited to BPU programs under the Energy Master Plan, but includes DEP responsibilities under the EMP PLUS DEP’s December 24, 2009 final Global Warming Response Act plan.

    I’ll send the Chairman a note along those lines.

  1. May 26th, 2010 at 07:51 | #1
  2. December 29th, 2010 at 14:19 | #2
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