Estuaries Series Part 5: Jersey Shores Up

Living on Earth
The World

If you just hurry through New Jersey along the interstate highways, you can get the impression that the state is a gritty concrete jungle of smokestacks and superfund sites. But if you get off the big roads and into state’s coastal regions, you’ll find plenty of beauty. New Jersey’s pine estuaries, forests, and beaches support a sweeping array of plant and animal life and provide a relaxing landscape. In fact, the region is so attractive to human life that development is putting a mighty strain on this complex ecosystem — a strain that regulators are having a tough time reigning in. In the next installment of our series on America’s estuaries, Paul Conlow reports on challenges facing New Jersey’s coastal areas — and what happens when a state attempts to protect both natural resources and real estate.

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