USA: With 130-mile coast, New Jersey marks a first in climate change fight
By Tracey Tully
New Jersey will become the first state to require that builders take into account the impact of climate change, including rising sea levels, in order to win government approval for projects, Gov. Philip D. Murphy announced on Monday.
The move by Mr. Murphy, a Democrat, is part of a widening effort by states to use regulations to address worsening climate conditions and to aggressively counteract the Trump administration’s push to roll back environmental regulations.
Like other states that have taken on climate change in the absence of any action from the White House, New Jersey has set a goal of producing 100 percent clean energy by 2050. Many states, including New York and California, have tried to create a bulwark against the dismantling of federal rules to combat climate change, and have joined together to challenge President Trump’s rollbacks in court.
A study released in November by Rutgers University found that the sea level in New Jersey was rising more than two times faster than the global average. Since 1911, the sea level rose 1.5 feet, compared with the global mean of 0.6 feet.