NEW JERSEY WIND WORKS COALITION RESPONDS TO THE LATEST WHALE STRANDINGS, SCIENCE AND FACTS SHOULD GUIDE REACTION
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2023
Contact: Michelle Peal
TRENTON – The following is a statement from members of the New Jersey Wind Works Coalition regarding two whale strandings in Raritan Bay in New Jersey and off Wainscott, New York, in anticipation of anti-offshore wind groups, including those funded by fossil fuel companies, continuing to perpetuate misinformation as part of a multi-state campaign to stop the growth of clean energy.
“The stranding of any whales is heartbreaking, and as an environmental organization, we are distressed to see the effects of climate change on our marine ecosystem. However, we continue to say it is irresponsible to attempt to assign blame to offshore wind energy development after leading experts have repeatedly stated there is no evidence of a connection between offshore wind and the Unusual Mortality Event that began in 2016,” said Allison McLeod, Public Policy Director, New Jersey LCV. “Transitioning to a 21st century clean energy economy will not only create good local jobs and clean New Jersey's air quality, but it will also slow the warming of our oceans and help save marine life. Those who really care about protecting our marine wildlife should address actual threats by restricting vessel speeds, eliminating abandoned fishing gear, removing plastic from our waters, and, of course, addressing climate change."
"Wind energy is a critical part of transitioning away from fossil fuels to clean renewable energy sources. Transforming our energy sources to clean and green ones will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help end the climate crisis,” said Jennifer M. Coffey, Executive Director, ANJEC.
“As a fishing charter/whale-watching business owner, I choose science-based facts over fabricated agenda-based BS because the health of our Ocean is at stake! Renewable energy from offshore wind power and other sources is needed now more than ever before to help stall the damage to our waters and the air we breathe,” said Capt. Paul Eidman, Reel Therapy Fishing Charters. “Climate change is in FACT the biggest threat to all the creatures of the sea. These fake, big oil-lubricated, pop-up 'environmentalists' that use the deaths of these magnificent creatures to continue beating the anti-clean energy, 'drill baby drill' drum disgust me. The time to stop burning fossil fuels is NOW!”
“We must face the fact that climate change and global warming are attributing to the drastic weather changes, ecosystems collapses, and food insecurity for both humans and wildlife alike,” said Rev. Ronald Tuff, GreenFaith Alliance NJ. “We are all threatened if we do not act to save our planet. We must create a new future with renewable energy sources like offshore wind and not get dismayed by those who wish to distract us from the true crises. We are all threatened if we do not act to save our planet.”
These unusual mortality event of marine mammals began in 2016 and 2017. NOAA, BOEM, the independent Marine Mammal Commission, and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), have all gone on the record to state there is no evidence of a connection between the recent ocean mammal strandings and offshore wind activities. In addition, when the Marine Mammal Stranding Center has had the opportunity to conduct necropsies, the results have shown evidence of boat strikes and net entanglements.