Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Conserving our Coasts and Waterfronts: New Jersey DEP's Coastal Management Program

As part of the CMRC's Harbor Bight Policy Initiative we examine the people and programs involved in the conservation and restoration our coasts and waterfronts. These "keepers" of our shore include a variety of government agencies, non-profit organizations, academic institutions, businesses and individuals. This installation of Conserving our Coasts and Waterfronts explores New Jersey DEP's Coastal Management Program. JB

Note: The CMRC is currently preparing a report entitled "Minding the Shore: Who is Responsible" to create a catalog of the entities involved with conserving and restoring our coasts. Stay tuned to www.thecmrc.org for its upcoming release!

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) is home to the State's Coastal Management Program (CMP), a collaborative effort that brings together many state agencies and departments to regulate and protect the coasts and waters of the region. Through the CMP, DEP manages the state's diverse coastal area that includes portions of eight counties and 126 municipalities.

The CMP began its efforts in earnest in 1972 following the passage of the Federal Coastal Zone Management Act and was formally approved in 1978. Thirty years later the Program continues to conserve the region's shores and waterfronts, most recently releasing a status report on their efforts called New Jersey's Coast 2005 (PDF).

In addition to CMP's management efforts, the Program also plays a large role in collecting and organizing New Jersey's scientific data on a wide range of topics including:

  • Historical Shoreline and Bathymetric Data
  • Historical Surveys, Maps and Aerial Photography
  • Beach Profile Data
  • Recreational Beach Water Quality

Finally, the CMP is active in ensuring that NJ's residents have ample access to the coastlines and estuaries of the State. They provide and map public access points and also work on waterfront revitalization initiatives such as the Hudson River Waterfront Walkway.

For more information:

NJDEP's Coastal Management Program

Map of NJ's Coastal Zone

NJ Department of Environmental Protection

Google Map of the NJ's Atlantic Coast

Wikipedia - "Jersey Shore"

Picture A. Blue Heron in Hackensack Meadowlands
Picture B. Asbury Park Waterfront

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