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Old 07-10-2006, 05:19 PM
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Default Bill Destroys 25 Years of Ocean Protection in NY and NJ

Bill Destroys 25 Years of Ocean Protection
Yesterday, the US House of Representatives voted to open the ocean to offshore oil and gas drilling, destroying the 25-year ban or moratorium that protects ocean resources. With a vote of 232-187, Congress ignored Americans? demands for smart, innovative, clean energy solutions and instead chose to allow drilling within miles of the nation?s treasured coastlines. Meanwhile, measures to improve efficiency standards for automobiles, buildings, and appliances were left on the cutting room floor.
This vote for the oil and gas industry to conduct harmful exploration and drilling leaves the Jersey Shore, the Hamptons, and the entire eastern seaboard vulnerable to pollution from spills and oil and gas development. In addition, not only was the bill environmentally harmful, it was deemed fiscally irresponsible by the Bush Administration. As a result of this reckless vote, the only hope is that the US Senate will stand-up to this gross lack of leadership for a responsible energy policy.

Clean Ocean Action is proud of NJ Governor Jon Corzine, who wrote a joint letter in opposition to the bill with fellow Governors from Connecticut and Delaware, and commends the New Jersey Delegation for their continued leadership and commitment. New Jersey?s bipartisan House delegation deserves praise as they continued to stand firm and opposed the weakening of protections, with the exception of fifth District Republican Representative Scott Garrett, who once again broke from the delegation and instead voted for the bill.

The shortsighted provisions contained in HR-4761 jeopardize NJ?s $32 billion travel and tourism industry, and NY?s multi-billion coastal contributions to the state?s economy (in 1995, 62.5% of the state economy was comprised of funds from coastal tourism). In addition, these drilling activities threaten the existence of more than 300 species of fish, nearly 350 species of birds as well as sea turtles, seals, porpoises and whales in the waters off NJ and NY.

This vote puts emphasis on the immediate need to permanently protect the NY/NJ Bight, which are those ocean waters stretching from Cape May, NJ to Montauk, NY, and to the outer continental shelf. Clean Ocean Action?s bi-partisan ?Clean Ocean Zone? legislation, which will be introduced in the coming weeks by Congressmen Jim Saxton (R-NJ-3) and Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ-6), will ensure that while other parts of the country may not value the their coastal ecosystem, New Jersey does and will continue to fight for ours (for information go to

The results listed below include the votes of NJ and NY Representatives on the bill. Clean Ocean Action encourages all residents to contact and praise those who voted against the bill and demand accountability from those who voted in favor of the bill.


Voting AGAINST Offshore Drilling:
New Jersey
District 1: Robert Andrews (202-225-6501)
District 2: Frank LoBiondo (202-225-6572)
District 3: Jim Saxton (202-225-4765)
District 4: Chris Smith (202-225-3765)
District 6: Frank Pallone (202-225-4671)
District 7: Mike Ferguson (202-225-5361)
District 8: William Pascrell, Jr. (202-225-5751)
District 9: Steven Rothman (202-225-5061)
District 10: Donald Payne (202-225-3436)
District 11: Rodney Frelinghuysen (202-225-5034)
District 12: Rush Holt (202-225-5801)
District 13: seat open

New York (Coastal)
District 1: Tim Bishop (202-225-3826)
District 2: Steve Israel (202-225-3335)
District 4: Carolyn McCarthy (202-225-5516)
District 5: Gary Ackerman (202-225-2601)
District 6: Gregory Meeks (202-225-3461)
District 7: Joseph Crowley (202-225-3965)
District 8: Jerrold Nadler (202-225-5635)
District 9: Anthony Weiner (202-225-6616)
District 10: Edolphus Towns (202-225-5936)
District 11: Major Owens (202-225-6231)
District 12: Nydia Vel?zquez (202-225-2361)
District 14: Carolyn Maloney (202-225-7944)
District 15: Charles Rangel (202-225-4365)
District 16: Jose Serrano (202-225-4361)
District 17: Eliot Engel (202-225-2464)
District 18: Nita Lowey (202-225-6506)
District 19: Sue Kelly (202-225-5441)

Voting FOR Offshore Drilling:
New Jersey
District 5: Scott Garrett (202-225-4465)

New York (Coastal)
District 3: Peter King (202-225-7896)
District 13: Vito Fossella (202-225-3371)
District 20: John Sweeney (202-225-5614)
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