Baron participated in the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection / Air & Waste Management Association (NJDEP/A&WMA) Annual Regulatory Update Conference that provided the regulated community an opportunity to understand the NJDEP priorities for 2019 and beyond, and to be able to engage in a dialogue on the programs with senior NJDEP Officials.
The session began with Debbie Mans, NJDEP Deputy Commissioner, providing comments on the “State of the Department” including a number of priorities of the new Governor.
Our “Top 10” Highlights of the daylong session include:
NJ Addressing Climate Change through rejoining RGGI- The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is a mandatory market-based program in the United States to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. RGGI is a cooperative effort among the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont to cap and reduce CO2 emissions from the power sector.
A focus on Managing Natural Resourcesof the state through open engagement with the public and with Environmental Justice in mind.
Increasing wind energy productionthrough offshore wind, large scale solar production including landfill solar where it makes sense, and a significant increase in electric vehicles and charging stations by utilizing funds from the Volkswagen emissions settlement.
Looking holistically at emerging contaminantsutilizing good science as the basis for developing standards.
The Governor issued Executive Order 23– Environmental Justice (EJ) that requires the NJDEP, as the lead agency, to develop a Guidance Document for all State Agencies on how to incorporate EJ into how they operate and determining communities in the state to be the focus of EJ activities and programs.
Site Remediation – Municipal Ticketing Program- If a remediation deadline is missed:
A compliance officer files a summons
Municipal court issues the summons and sets a court appearance date
DAG sends a letter to the defendant offering to settle the violation
If a settlement cannot be reached, the case goes to trial in municipal court
Over $260,000 in penalties assessed through October, 2018.
Chapter 26F: Heating Oil Tank System Remediation Rules- Adopted August 6, 2018 - This chapter constitutes the minimum administrative and technical requirements for the remediation of a discharge of heating oil from a heating oil tank system, pulling them out of the rules for remediation of all other discharges.
Governor Murphy’s Administration has set the clean energy tone:
Executive Order 8– Aggressive implementation of the 2010 Offshore Wind Economic Development Act to meet 3,500 MW by 2030. (1MW powers approx. 750 homes)
Executive Order 28– Advance New Jersey’s clean energy economy through completion of a comprehensive Energy Master Plan by June 2019.
Largest single state offshore wind capacity solicitation at 1,100 MW (as part of Federal Offshore Wind Commercial Leasing Program).
Key New Energy Legislation
Increase the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard to 35% by 2025 and 50% by 2050 with specific solar targets;
Establish a community-solar program;
Target 2 gigawatts of energy storage by 2030; and,
Establishes a zero-emission credit program.
Oyster Creek Nuclear Plant Shutdown
The nation’s oldest operating commercial power plant in the US, Oyster Creek, permanently ceased operations on September 17, 2018.
The 625-megawatt single unit boiling-water reactor shut down 10 years prior to its license expiration.
All the spent nuclear fuel from the reactor has been moved to the spent fuel pool, significantly reducing offsite radiological risks.
Holtec International will take over all regulatory and financial decommissioning requirements for, the site and wastes. Including the oversight and emergency planning commitments laid out in the January 2018 Administrative Consent Order, that exceed the NRC requirements.
Spent fuel “dry cast” Storage is to be completed no later than 2021.
NJDEP Office of Dispute Resolution (ODR)
Voluntary program that provides a non-court based forum for resolution of disagreements between the regulated community and the DEP. The ODR will entertain any request to resolve a dispute other than:
A direct challenge to a DEP regulation, rule or policy; or
A dispute solely between private parties.
ODR staff act as neutrals and offer mediation and facilitation services.
Frequently handle objections to, and appeals from, permit conditions and denials, compliance issues and penalty assessments.
Over 85% of the cases where the parties have agreed to participate in Alternative Dispute Resolution have resulted in a mutually satisfactory agreement.
A list of the Full Presentations is provided below – the actual presentations are available through the A&WMA link: https://www.mass-awma.net/nj-events.html