🐬 Dolphins last stranded along the Jersey Shore in June

🐬 Gov. Phil Murphy says there is no evidence linking wind project work to the strandings

🐬 Opponents held their 'Hands Across the Beaches' protest at beaches

BARNEGAT — A dead bottlenose dolphin was found Monday floating in Barnegat Bay, the first recorded stranding off the Jersey Shore in almost a month.

The Marine Mammal Stranding Center reported the adult male was badly decomposed and never washed ashore. It was the first marine mammal to become stranded in nearly a month.

Six dolphins were found in June including a rare Risso's Dolphin in Seaside Park on June 24 and another off in the Arthur Kill off Alvin P. Williams Park in the Sewaren section of Woodbridge.

At least 40 dolphins and 12 whales have become stranded on New Jersey and New York beaches since December, according to the Mammal Stranding Center.  Some blame on preparation work involving sonar for the Ocean Wind 1 project off Atlantic City.

Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation that allows Orsted to keep federal tax credits that it otherwise would have been required to pass along to New Jersey utility ratepayers. Lawmakers who narrowly approved the bill last week said the aid is necessary to help Orsted deal with inflation and the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Hands Across the Beaches in Ocean City 7/15/23
Hands Across the Beaches in Ocean City 7/15/23 (Clean Ocean Action)

Protest on the beach

Hundreds of people clasped hands and joined Protect Our Coast's Hands Across the Beaches standing shoulder to shoulder on beaches up-and-down the Jersey Shore Saturday to show their opposition to the project.

"I want to thank all of those who showed up at the beach today to peacefully protest against the windmill project invading our shoreline," Ocean City Councilman Jody Levchuk wrote on his Facebook page. "This project has been forced down our throats and we will all suffer the consequences as a result starting with much higher energy bills."

Protect Our Coast, which filed a lawsuit to stop the Orsted project, thanked everyone who showed up for the event.

"We now need to maintain the momentum. There are several public hearing events coming up that will require attendance and involvement. Keep an eye out here as well as the other groups for updates," the group wrote on their Facebook page.

Hands Across the Beaches in Ocean City 7/15/23
Hands Across the Beaches in Ocean City 7/15/23 (Jon Baker)

Supporters of wind energy see no link to deaths

Clean Ocean Action wrote after the event it supports a pilot project for offshore wind developers to confirm claims made by industry and government promoters, as well as understand its true environmental impacts.

Supporters of wind projects say there is no evidence linking the work to the deaths, which have been happening for several years. Environmental groups have accused opponents of wind energy of exploiting the deaths.

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