(from Jersey Coast Anglers Association
September 2006 Newsletter)
The Jersey Coast Anglers Association ( JCAA) is writing you with
comments and issues that should be addressed and analyzed in the Environmental
Impact Statement ( EIS ) your agency is in the process of preparing. These
written comments are in addition to those made by JCAA at the May 23, 2006
scoping meeting in Trenton, NJ. These comments are being made on behalf of the
75 fishing clubs represented by JCAA.
Recreational fishing in New Jersey evolves more than 1.2 million
anglers and generates more than 1 billion dollars to the state’s economy Any
renewable energy program or its activities that could adversely impact on the
recreational fishery can have serious economic and social impacts on new Jersey
as well as decrease its quality of life.
The JCAA has an open mind on the sitting of renewable energy
projects in near shore ocean waters. We are concerned over the environmental
damage caused by existing power facilities both on land and on estuarine waters.
Renewable energy facilities could eliminate many of the existing environmental
problems so long as they do not cause other environmental problems. It was
stated at the NJ scooping hearing that wind energy projects will most likely be
a few miles to 15 miles offshore. This is the location where most saltwater
recreational fishing takes place. The closer wind generation occurs to shore,
the greater the potential conflict with fish habitat and well as spatial
conflict with anglers. For example, the placement of any towers to support wind
energy will usurp the natural ocean habitat which is a public resource now used
by anglers and the wildlife they depends on it. How does the MMS plan to
mitigate for this loss of habitat? Will the agency require the construction of
artificial reefs at the base of each tower to increase the production of fish
and invertebrate life?
We have identified several areas of interest that require
addressing in the EIS. They are as follows:
Impacts of the placement of wind turbine towers on or near
existing fishing grounds. Will such towers prevent recreational fishing in the
The loss of natural habitat by the placement of wind towers on
the ocean seabed.
Environmental impacts caused by the installation and maintenance
of transmission lines between towers and between towers and shore.
Electro magnetic impacts on marine life caused by the
transmission lines. Will these interfere or prevent the migratory movement of
fish and benthic organisms?
Will the tower fields become exclusion zones for anglers either
because of national security or safety reasons for navigation