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This week is the 12th annual Air Quality Awareness Week, and the theme is “Air Quality Where You Are.” DEP and the state of New Jersey have made it a priority to improve air quality and increase air quality awareness. To help celebrate, Frank Steitz sat down with Gladys Giron to talk about air quality, criteria air pollutants, how well New Jersey i…
 
Trenton was the third city to join DEP’s Community Collaborative Initiative. In this episode, Bob Bostock sits down with Julie Krause, single point of contact for Trenton at DEP, to talk about her work with local government officials, community groups and stakeholders to support environmental improvement projects important to the city. Listen in as…
 
In Discover DEP’s 6th episode, Frank McLaughlin told us about the Community Collaborative initiative and how it got its start in Camden. Now, the CCI has expanded to three additional cities across the state, which will be featured on the next few episodes. This episode will focus on Perth Amboy, the second city to join the initiative. Listen in as …
 
Since the first National Women’s History Month in March 1987, every year we take a moment to recognize, honor and celebrate the achievements of American women. This month recognizes the courage and contributions of women everywhere who are breaking down barriers, raising their voices and fighting for what they believe in. There has been a continuou…
 
New Jersey’s state parks are home to about 1,000 miles of official trails and, thanks to the State Park Service, every mile is now available on Trail Tracker. Trail Tracker allows you to track your current location, view trails and points of interest, search for park activities, and download PDF maps of New Jersey’s state parks. This app is helpful…
 
This week (March 11-17) is AmeriCorps Week, which celebrates AmeriCorps members and alumni for their commitment to educating the public about the environment, stewardship, and the impact their work has around the state and nation. In fact, DEP’s own AmeriCorps New Jersey Watershed Ambassadors are celebrating throughout the state. In this week’s Dis…
 
With spectacular views of New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York, as well as many superb trails, High Point State Park is one you shouldn’t miss. As its name suggests, High Point is nearly at the northern-most point of our state. It is also home to the highest point of elevation in the state. Listen in as Gladys Giron talks with Rebecca Fitzgerald, …
 
Last year, the lobby in DEP’s main building in Trenton featured a display highlighting the connection between baseball and New Jersey’s geology. Now, this latest display features a new aspect of New Jersey’s geology – fluorescent minerals. Under ultraviolet light, certain minerals glow with an amazing array of vibrant colors. This is known as fluor…
 
Resource Interpretive Specialists tell the story of New Jersey’s history, nature and our world, helping people connect to their environment through public programs, hikes, exhibits, recreation, ecotourism and education. Bob Bostock sits down with Diane Hewlett-Lowrie, a Resource Interpretive Specialist for New Jersey’s State Park Service, to discus…
 
Maple sugaring is a tradition in the Northeast that began centuries ago with Native Americans and colonists. Now, organizations around the country have maple sugaring programs to bring this tradition to life for people of all ages to see and enjoy. Wayne Henderek, Resource Interpretive Specialist at the Washington Crossing State Park Nature Center,…
 
With more than 160 federal and state laws passed over the past 20 years dealing with the environment and permits, things can become enormously complex. The Office of Permit Coordination and Environmental Review was established to coordinate and facilitate the permitting of large complex projects across multiple DEP programs. John Gray, Director of …
 
The mission of Air Quality, Energy & Sustainability (AQES) is to ensure that New Jersey’s air is clean and safe to breathe, evaluate and support the development and implementation of secure and resilient energy systems, and promote sustainable environmental practices. Bob Bostock sits down with Paul Baldauf, Assistant Commissioner of AQES, to discu…
 
Site Remediation and Waste Management Program (SRWMP) is the DEP’s program area that administers laws and regulations concerning contaminated sites, recycling and disposal of solid wastes in the state. Mark Pedersen, Assistant Commissioner of the Site Remediation and Waste Management Program, sits down with Bob Bostock to discuss the changes set fo…
 
The Office of Local Government Assistance plays a crucial role as a liaison between local governments and DEP. This office makes sure that the lines of communication are open between New Jersey’s county and municipal leaders and DEP, and that local issues are heard and addressed. Bob Bostock sits down with Kerry Kirk Pflugh, the director of Local G…
 
DEP’s core mission is to protect the air, water, land, and natural and historic resources in the state of New Jersey. At the same time, DEP plays a key role in positively impacting the economic growth of the state. While DEP’s goals have remained the same, this agency has undergone a significant transformation since Commissioner Martin took office …
 
As Deputy Commissioner, Dave Glass serves as second in command for DEP under Commissioner Bob Martin. He is responsible for continuing the agency’s successes in developing and implementing policies that balance strong environmental protection, economic growth, and common sense solutions to environmental issues. Listen in as Dave sits down with Glad…
 
Over the last several decades, DEP has been ensuring that all New Jerseyans have safe water to drink and all the necessary information. Since the presence of lead in drinking water has become a national matter of concern, DEP’s efforts to ensure that New Jersey’s drinking water is clean and safe are more important than ever. Bob Bostock sits down w…
 
Although New Jersey is far from the largest state in the Union, it is the most densely populated, making it a challenge to protect our land. Our 8,729 square miles of land encompass many diverse uses. Land Use Management is a group of programs that protect and enhance New Jersey's environment through implementation of State land use regulations, re…
 
To help address environmental inequities, DEP launched the Environmental Justice Program to ensure fair treatment for people of all races, cultures, and incomes, in the development, implementation and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies. The Environmental Justice Program aims to empower citizens who are disproportionately im…
 
DEP’s Natural and Historic Resources office is charged with preserving and protecting New Jersey’s natural, ecological and cultural resources, including state parks and forests, wildlife management areas, our fish and wildlife, and state historic sites that are so valued by our residents and visitors to the Garden State. From mountains to beaches, …
 
This episode concludes Discover DEP’s three-part series focusing on the Pine Barrens. In this third and final episode, Bob Bostock sits down with Tom Gerber, Section Forest Fire Warden and long-time DEP employee, to talk about the history and legends of the Pine Barrens. A New Jersey native, Tom shares his extensive knowledge of the area including …
 
The Discover DEP team is in the midst of a three-part series focusing on the Pine Barrens. This second episode focuses on the fauna of the Pinelands. Mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and bugs are important residents of this area and are greatly affected by the region’s ecosystem and climate. Listen in as Bob Bostock sits down with John He…
 
The Discover DEP team is embarking on a three-part series focusing on the Pine Barrens. The Pine Barrens is a unique part of New Jersey’s landscape. From pygmy pines to “ghost forests,” the flora of the Pine Barrens has an interesting story to tell. Bernie Isaacson, Assistant Regional Forester, sits down with Bob Bostock to kick off this three-part…
 
The Engineering & Construction program is responsible for administering shore protection, dam restoration and flood control projects throughout the State of New Jersey. This program has been responsible for managing more than $1.5 billion in federal post-Superstorm Sandy projects. Bob Bostock sits down with Dave Rosenblatt, Assistant Commissioner o…
 
Cyanobacteria are naturally present in lakes and streams, usually in low numbers. However, under suitable environmental conditions, they can form dense blooms. Cyanobacterial Harmful Algal Blooms, or CyanoHABs, can discolor water and potentially harm fish and other aquatic organisms. They can also threaten human health and the health of pets that m…
 
Have you ever wondered about why some New Jersey towns have the word “Mount” in their names, such as Mount Holly and Mount Ephraim, when their topography seems so flat? This quirky fact sparked the interest of John O’Brien, cartoonist for the New Yorker and inspired him to draw a cartoon that was published in the New York Times in 1995. Jeff Hoffma…
 
The nutritional value of fish is hard to deny – they are full of protein, minerals and vitamins and are a part of a well-balanced diet. However, fish and crabs can harbor contaminants such as mercury, PCBs and dioxin. Scientists have performed numerous studies on the presence of these chemicals in fish and have developed the “Fish Smart Eat Smart” …
 
DEP’s Office of Equal Opportunity and Public Contract Assistance is committed to maintaining an environment that promotes equal employment opportunity and equal access to the benefits of employment for all employees and to ensure that socially and economically disadvantaged businesses have an opportunity to compete for construction and procurement …
 
Nearly 12 million immigrants went through Ellis Island’s immigration inspection station in its 60 years of operation, making it a significant part of the history of the United States. But have you ever wondered if Ellis Island resides within the confines of New Jersey or New York? If you have, you’re not alone – these two states squabbled over this…
 
In a data-driven organization such as the DEP, long-term environmental trend reports can help employees understand how their work affects the environment and determine where resources should be directed to achieve DEP priorities and goals. Trend reports also inform the public whether we’re meeting our mission to preserve and protect New Jersey’s ai…
 
Freshwater mussels inhabit rivers, streams, lakes and ponds. They are vital to their ecosystems, filtering water and cleaning our waterways. Jeanette Bowers-Altman, Principal Zoologist in DEP’s Endangered and Nongame Species Program, sits down with Gladys Giron to discuss this fascinating mollusk and its status in New Jersey, role in the environmen…
 
DEP is responsible for monitoring the quality of New Jersey’s water. One way by which this is done is through biological monitoring. The Fish and Headwaters’ Index of Biotic Integrity monitoring programs, also known as FIBI & HIBI, use fish and other aquatic species as measures of water quality. John Vile and Brian Henning, research scientists in D…
 
It’s tick season, and those little buggers are biting with a vengeance this year. For many, ticks and other outdoor pests can put a damper on our favorite outdoor summer activities. It’s important to follow safety precautions to avoid these unwelcome guests on your summer adventures. Jim Occi, PhD graduate student in Entomology at Rutgers Universit…
 
Out of New Jersey’s 40 treasured state parks, Island Beach State Park and Liberty State Park are the largest and most-visited. With hundreds of thousands of visitors per year, dedicated state employees work hard to make sure the parks are up and running year-round. Superintendents Jen Clayton and Rob Rodriguez talk about the amenities, history and …
 
This year, DEP’s Division of Fish and Wildlife is celebrating its 125th Anniversary. The Division has rededicated itself to its long-time mission of conserving wildlife and providing recreation opportunities for generations of hunters, anglers and wildlife enthusiasts. New Jersey is home to a remarkable diversity of fish and wildlife species and hu…
 
Fishing is a popular pastime in New Jersey, and you can’t talk fish without mentioning the summer flounder, also known as fluke. New Jersey is pursuing an agreement regarding 2017 fishing regulations. Currently, New Jersey’s regulations for summer flounder fishing are: 18-inch minimum size, 104-day season, and 3-fish possession limit. To keep this …
 
Baseball is the National Pastime, but literally every pitch thrown in both the major and minor leagues carries a piece of the Garden State to the plate. That’s because for more than 75 years every baseball put in play has first been rubbed with a little bit of Lena Blackburn Baseball Rubbing Mud, which takes the shine and slickness off of the ball.…
 
This past spring, DEP partnered with Montclair State University’s Marketing Department to create a social media project for the Montclair students. The students were able to analyze 7 of DEP’s Facebook pages, give DEP’s social media administrators feedback, and create social media campaigns for Earth Week 2017. Now that the project is completed, Dr…
 
The Blue Acres Program offers New Jersey residents the opportunity to sell properties that were damaged by Super Storm Sandy, or which lie in areas that are exposed to repetitive flooding damage. DEP works with homeowners in these areas to reduce the risk of future flood damage and to help families move out of harm’s way. Fawn McGee, Director of th…
 
May is Historic Preservation Month. This month is particularly exciting for DEP’s Historic Preservation Office (HPO), which works to preserve, protect and promote New Jersey’s historic resources. Kate Marcopul, Administrator of the Historic Preservation Office, sits down with Bob Bostock to discuss the important role that HPO plays in the state of …
 
DEP’s overall mission is to protect New Jersey’s air, land, water, and natural and historic resources. In order to do that, we also need to be regulators, enforcing laws and rules. That’s where Compliance & Enforcement comes in. C&E helps businesses, schools, communities, and homeowners keep the environment clean, safe, enjoyable, and maintained fo…
 
Since 1984, the Bureau of Marine Fisheries has been involved in an intensive program of artificial reef construction and biological monitoring. Artificial reefs in ocean waters along the New Jersey coast provide a habitat for fish, shellfish and crustaceans, fishing grounds for anglers, and underwater structures for scuba divers. This past Wednesda…
 
DEP is kicking off Air Quality Awareness week, May 1-5, 2017. The purpose of this week is to raise awareness about air pollution, what DEP is doing to reduce the public’s exposure to air pollution, and to encourage everyone to take action to protect themselves and their families from air pollutants. To celebrate Air Quality Awareness Week, Paul Bal…
 
New Jersey is home to nearly 1,700 regulated dams. DEP’s Division of Engineering and Construction administers the New Jersey Dam Safety program, which ensures the safety and integrity of dams in New Jersey and protects people and property from the consequences of dam failures. Bob Bostock co-hosted this episode on dam safety with Audrey Miller of N…
 
Ringwood Manor is a National Historic Landmark District and a part of Ringwood State Park. It has historical importance spanning from Native American times through the early 20th century. Original historical structures, gardens and landscapes on 582 acres give visitors an inside look at family life, community, industry and culture throughout histor…
 
The bobcat is New Jersey’s only species of wild cat, and is listed as endangered in New Jersey. The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife works with many partners across the state to make sure bobcats are getting the support they need in terms of protection from habitat fragmentation and vehicle strikes. Gretchen Fowles, Geographic Information S…
 
Since the first National Women’s History Month in March 1987, every year we recognize, honor and celebrate the achievements of American women. There has also been a continuous effort to bring and engage women in the STEM and environmental fields. In honor of Women’s History Month, Chief of Staff Magdalena Padilla sits down with three women who are …
 
New Jersey’s drinking water is regularly tested, and our water systems are clean and up to standard - less than 1% of public water systems incurred maximum contaminant levels or national exceedances in 2016. When anomalies do happen, particularly with private wells, our team here at DEP is ready to respond to these cases of Immediate Environmental …
 
Although winter is soon coming to a close, it is not yet over. New Jersey’s cold blooded animals have a unique set of challenges to deal with in the cold winter months, but they’ve developed ways to survive and thrive in conditions year-round. Brian Zarate, Senior Zoologist in the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s Endangered and Nongame Species Progr…
 
The AmeriCorps New Jersey Watershed Ambassadors Program is now in its 17th year and promotes watershed stewardship through education, direct community involvement and monitoring of stream health through visual and biological assessments. This week is AmeriCorps week and it is a time when individuals, programs and organizations honor and celebrate t…
 
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