TRENTON – The Senate Environment and Energy Committee today approved a measure sponsored by Senator Bob Smith that offers a win-win solution for commercial fishing and the environment. The resolution, SR-46, urges the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council to establish new artificial reefs for commercial fishing and to consider using dredged materials from the Delaware River and New York-New Jersey Harbor for the construction of the new reefs.
“If designed and located properly, artificial reefs enhance the habitat and diversity of fishing resources,” said Sen. Smith, Chairman of the Energy and Environment Committee (D-Middlesex, Somerset). “Increasing the amount of environmental reefs along the Jersey coast would be a huge boon to both commercial and recreational fishing. With the ongoing dredging of the New York Harbor for the new trans-Hudson tunnel, we have an ideal opportunity to use these materials in a responsible manner that would eliminate the environmental burden and costs usually associated with the disposal of dredged materials.”