Home > Uncategorized > The Murphy Administration Is Abandoning And Watering Down Climate And Environmental Protections Based On Bogus Economic Arguments

The Murphy Administration Is Abandoning And Watering Down Climate And Environmental Protections Based On Bogus Economic Arguments

A Disturbing Pattern And Revealing Contradiction:

Compliance Costs Are Exaggerated & Benefits Ignored For Climate & Environmental Protections

Benefits Are Exaggerated And Costs Ignored For Economic Development Projects

A deeply troubling pattern has emerged and become embedded in the environmental and climate policy of the Murphy administration.

It’s bad enough that NJ Spotlight reporter Tom Johnson rants almost daily about the so called high costs of clean energy (while ignoring benefits), but it is really terrible when those bogus political slogans and flawed economic arguments actually drive Gov. Murphy’s policies.

(Tom wrote another biased rant today, using the appointment of new BPU Commissioners as an opportunity to beat the high cost drum.)

There have been a series of recent high profile Murphy administration capitulations to those sham economic arguments, including:

Every single one of these policy setbacks is based on sacrificing public health, climate and environmental protections based on grossly exaggerated short term compliance costs and failure to consider a broad range of long term benefits.

Every single one elevated politics and economic development above science and environmental and public health protections.

And I can’t get NJ Spotlight’s Jon Hurdle to report the fact that the NJ Safe Drinking Water Act does not allow the DWQI and DEP to consider costs in recommending and setting drinking water standards, respectively, a key fact that distinguishes the more stringent NJ State law from the federal Safe Drinking Water Act (which does allow costs to be considered.)

After I specifically criticized his misleading reporting and told him this NJ SDWA fact, instead of correcting the false impressions he created and printing those facts, instead Hurdle reported that the federal EPA drinking water standard for PFAS did consider costs, thereby intentionally misleading readers about the essential issue (i.e. the relationship between costs and health risks)!:

The [EPA] agency identified 4 ppt after considering utilities’ ability to measure and treat for the substance, as well as the costs and benefits of complying with that level. 

It’s gotten so bad, that even rubes from the south jersey mining industry know exactly how to push Gov. Murphy’s buttons and kill water regulations by the Pinelands Commission:

It is our feeling, if adopted as currently written without clarification, the industry will have to cut production by 50%. This will lead to a huge shortage, only exacerbating the current shortage and will threaten the contractors in our state’s ability to complete vital DOT projects such as bridges, highways and local roads. In addition to a lack of materials, the shortage from these regulations could mean a doubling in material price. Given the current inflationary environment we live in today, these regulations, as currently written, will threaten the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Capital Program. ~~~ Source:William Layton, New Jersey Concrete and Aggregate Association. 11/4/22 – You may contact him at  bill@clbnj.com

(I guess after you get your ass kicked by a hack from the NJ (fossil) Fuel Merchants Assc., it’s actually a step up in the political world to get pushed around and reamed by south jersey sand miners.)

The Murphy compromises are particularly insidious, because Gov. Murphy constantly claims to be a “green” Governor and environmental groups constantly cheerlead for him and his DEP Commissioner (a former corporate lawyer who represented major toxic polluters, a fact you never read in the news coverage.)

As a matter of policy on the role of economic considerations in climate and environmental protections,  Gov. Murphy touted the fact that he repealed Gov. Christie’s Executive Order #2, which directed State agencies to provide “regulatory relief” and mandated the use of cost benefit analysis.

But despite appearances and press release spin, Murphy’s replacement Executive Order #63 is equally troubling.

So, the Gov.’s economic driven policy is being done with no transparency and accountability and is affirmatively masked by his press releases and Executive Orders.

We were not fooled by this from day one, but the NJ public has been.

So, as William Greeder wrote: Who will tell the people about this reality?

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