Thank you for your strong leadership following Hurricane Sandy. I appreciate all you have done to help New Jersey get through this disaster. I truly hope that you will continue to work to lessen the likelihood of future superstorms like Sandy.
This year you have many decisions ahead of you that could help New Jersey avoid climate destruction. We are one of the states most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, with our shore areas very vulnerable to sea-level rise. Unlike other states, we know that we cannot just legislate that away—the best we can do is put in place policies that reduce the chance of our adding to the problem. We need to develop and invest in clean energy solutions to stop climate change for destroying our state.
In the coming months your administration must move forward on offshore wind to provide us with the clean power we need. This is something you supported at the beginning of your term; we need to get moving as your term winds down. You must fund the Clean Energy Program so we can reduce carbon dioxide pollution through energy efficiency. In addition, you must ensure that rebuilding of the Jersey shore is done smartly, in a way the reduces the damage of future storms. Simply rebuilding in harm’s way will lead to more flooding; we need real coastal management that allows access to the beaches we all love while our homes and businesses are protected by being further inland, using designs that are appropriate for shore areas (requiring building on pilings, for instance).
Again, I thank you for your leadership post-Sandy. But now we need your leadership on climate action to protect the future of our state.
N.B.: The above is my customized version of the Sierra Club’s petition to N.J.’s Governor Christie.