The following letter from Phil Murphy to the Delaware River Basin Commission was read into the record during the Commission’s June 14, 2017, meeting:
For seven years, the Delaware River Basin Commission’s moratorium on fracking has ensured the continued protection of open space, the river’s recreational areas, and, most importantly, the water of more than 15 million residents.
It is now time for this moratorium to become a permanent ban. I join with the New Jersey Chapter of the Sierra Club, the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, and the many other organizations and private citizens in support of such action.
I have been clear from the beginning of my campaign that fracking should have no role in the energy future of New Jersey, and given the tremendous importance of the Delaware River to the state, that sentiment must also be applied broadly to the Delaware River Basin. While there is currently no fracking underway or planned for New Jersey, what happens in neighboring states does have a direct impact on New Jersey. It is also why I fully support a ban on the importation of fracking wastes into New Jersey — to protect against an accident or spill that would harm our lands and waters.
We must begin to look away from the limited resources underneath the ground for energy and instead look to the unlimited potential of fully harnessing the sun and winds. Indeed, I have called for New Jersey to deploy a new Energy Master Plan that would see our state 100% clean energy reliant by the year 2050, with achievable short-term benchmark goals for storage and wind energy. Not only are such actions in the best interests of our environment, they will lead to a more sustainable and growing economic future.
Our state’s and region’s long-term environmental and economic health and progress go hand-in-hand, and must be put before short-term political whims. This Commission can send that unequivocal message by permanently prohibiting fracking within its jurisdiction.