New Jersey will soon be the first state to require building companies to consider the impact of climate change on a project before securing government approval for it.
Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, plans to announce the measure Monday as part of a greater effort by some blue states to counteract the Trump administration’s push to roll back environmental regulations, the New York Times reported.
The Democrat governor, through executive order, plans to require the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to start drafting tighter environmental regulations that would go into effect by January 2022.
The state’s initiative is believed to be one of the broadest attempts by a state to control what developers can build and where they can build and control the amount of emissions that gets released into the air.
His executive order does not need legislative approval, but it could receive legal and political challenges.
One prominent Republican, Republican Minority Leader Assemblyman Jon Bramnick, said Murphy’s proposal would have a “chilling effect on growth” in the state.
“Phil Murphy might be forgetting that we still make the laws,” said Bramnick. “If he’s going to roll out something that’s going to stop development in New Jersey, that calls for serious legislative hearings.”
The Trump administration recently announced that it would be rolling back protections for waterways, streams, and wetlands protected by the Clean Water Act under the Environmental Protection Agency. The move was welcomed by many builders, farmers, and even miners.
The administration has even gone after states that have gone around the relaxed standards to put in stricter rules. In one example back in September, Trump revoked California’s push for stricter vehicle emissions.
Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom defended the stricter vehicle emissions as an act of federalism and called Trump’s move “aggressive.”
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