Barnegat Bay degradation moving south

Two years after hearing a scientist’s dire warning on Barnegat Bay, New Jersey lawmakers heard how the bay’s degradation appears to be spreading south from Ocean County’s biggest suburbs. The northern end of the 42-mile-long estuary already has crippled water quality, a trend that has accelerated during the last 20 years, Rutgers University research professor Michael Kennish told a joint meeting of the Legislature’s environment committees. "The situation has not gotten better; it’s gotten worse in term of nutrients," said Kennish, who leads the university’s Barnegat Bay science efforts and is an author of a recently updated report on the bay’s conditions.

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NJ must act on bay report, watchdog group says

Gov. Chris Christie’s administration should accept and act upon an updated Barnegat Bay report by limiting future land development in Ocean County and adopting strict limits on nutrients flowing to bay tributary streams, contends a watchdog group of former government environmental workers…Rutgers scientists Michael Kennish, Benjamin Fertig and others reported the bay’s declines in water quality and marine habitat are "strongly related to land use" with the biggest impacts associated with big suburban towns such as Toms River, compared to less populous reaches of the southern bay.

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Polar vortex in NJ soon? Nope, expert says

Is the polar vortex, which often brought frigid air to New Jersey this winter, planning a mid-July invasion? Nope, said David A. Robinson, the New Jersey state climatologist at Rutgers University. "This polar vortex (talk) is like out of control," Robinson said. But the summer jet stream will be a little wavier than usual, dipping a little farther south than normal in the Midwest area, he said. "Along the Atlantic coast, not such a big deal."

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RU sparks science interest among girls, minorities

While most high school students stay far from the classroom in summer, 15-year-old Shayla Needham was excited to spend a week at Rutgers University as a Samsung Scholar studying STEM – science, technology, engineering and math…"The program gives them the opportunity to explore different STEM skills and fields and find something that possibly sparks a future career," said Chad Ripberger, the Mercer County 4-H agent who six years ago co-founded the program with Janice McDonnell, the state 4-H science agent.

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Eat to live: Latest trends in food safety and quality

Stevie Shutman came to Dean’s Natural Market looking for lactose-free cream cheese for her son, but she’s a regular shopper there because she knows she’s not getting a side of pesticides with her organic fruits and vegetables…Like Brown and Shutman, more Americans are concerned about the health of their food, with 71 percent saying it impacts their decisions about what they buy, according to a study released in May by the International Food Information Council Foundation…GMOs are created through a process where scientists transfer specific traits from one type of plant or animal to another in a way that they wouldn’t normally be able to do through traditional crossbreeding, said William Hallman, a professor of human ecology and former director of the Food Policy Institute at Rutgers University who studies how consumers think about food risks.

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