Episode 70-High Points in New Jersey with John O’Brien and Jeff Hoffman

October 5, 2017

Have you ever wondered about why some New Jersey towns have the word “Mount” in their names, such as Mount Holly and Mount Ephraim, when their topography seems so flat? This quirky fact sparked the interest of John O’Brien, cartoonist for the New Yorker and inspired him to draw a cartoon that was published in the New York Times in 1995. Jeff Hoffman, DEP’s State Geologist, saw this cartoon and was, in turn, inspired to write a report entitled “Highest Elevations by County in New Jersey.” Listen in as Bob Bostock sits down with John and Jeff to hear the story behind the cartoon and the report it inspired.

Click here to view the “Highest Elevations by County in New Jersey” report.

Click here to visit the New Jersey Geological and Water Survey website.

Click here to explore John O’Brien’s website.

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Photo: John O'Brien (left) and Jeff Hoffman (right).

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Cartoon by John O'Brien

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Photo: (left to right) John O'Brien, Commissioner Bob Martin, Jeff Hoffman

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Episode 69-Fish Smart Eat Smart Guide with Gary Buchanan and Bruce Ruppel

September 20, 2017

The nutritional value of fish is hard to deny – they are full of protein, minerals and vitamins and are a part of a well-balanced diet. However, fish and crabs can harbor contaminants such as mercury, PCBs and dioxin. Scientists have performed numerous studies on the presence of these chemicals in fish and have developed the “Fish Smart Eat Smart” guide. This guide provides consumption advisories for fish and crabs found in the state. Gary Buchanan, Director of the Division of Science, Research and Environmental Health, and Bruce Ruppel, Environmental Specialist, sat down with Bob Bostock to discuss the extensive work that went into the creation of this guide and the recommendations that it provides.

To learn more about the Fish Smart, Eat Smart guide, please visit www.fishsmarteatsmartnj.org

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Bruce Ruppel (left) and Gary Buchanan (right)

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Episode 68-Equal Employment Opportunity with Hester Agudosi

September 11, 2017

DEP’s Office of Equal Opportunity and Public Contract Assistance is committed to maintaining an environment that promotes equal employment opportunity and equal access to the benefits of employment for all employees and to ensure that socially and economically disadvantaged businesses have an opportunity to compete for construction and procurement contracts.

Hester Agudosi, who joined DEP as the office’s director in February 2017, sat down with Bob Bostock to discuss the importance of this office, her initiatives as director, and the process by which employees can report any issues they may be having.

To learn more about the Office of Equal Opportunity and Public Contract Assistance at DEP, please visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/eo/index.htm

To reach the Office of Equal Opportunity and Public Contract Assistance at DEP, please call 609-984-9742.

DEP employees can visit http://depnet/dep-intranet/equal_op/index.htm for more detailed information.

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Episode 67-Ellis Island-New Jersey v. New York with Bob Marshall

September 1, 2017

Nearly 12 million immigrants went through Ellis Island’s immigration inspection station in its 60 years of operation, making it a significant part of the history of the United States. But have you ever wondered if Ellis Island resides within the confines of New Jersey or New York? If you have, you’re not alone – these two states squabbled over this land for years. Bob Marshall, special advisor to the Commissioner for Energy and the Environment, sits down with Bob Bostock to answer this decades-old debate over the rightful jurisdiction over Ellis Island. As Deputy Attorney General in the 1998 New Jersey v. New York United States Supreme Court case, the first trial ever held in the U.S. Supreme Court building, Bob Marshall played an integral role in the decision that the vast majority of Ellis Island is within the jurisdiction of New Jersey.

To learn more about Ellis Island, click here.

To learn more about the 1998 New Jersey v. New York United States Supreme Court case, click here.

To view the Ellis Island quarter, released as a part of the 2017 America the Beautiful Quarters® Program, click here.

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Episode 66-Environmental Trends and Key Performance Indicators with Dr. Sandra Goodrow and Jennifer Feltis-Cortese

August 25, 2017

In a data-driven organization such as the DEP, long-term environmental trend reports can help employees understand how their work affects the environment and determine where resources should be directed to achieve DEP priorities and goals. Trend reports also inform the public whether we’re meeting our mission to preserve and protect New Jersey’s air, land, water and natural and historic resources. In addition to the importance of these reports, Governor Christie’s Performance Center initiative tracks the operations and performance of each department of state government with a focus on effectiveness, efficiency, timeliness and service quality. Listen to the latest DEP podcast where Dr. Sandra Goodrow, a Research Scientist in DEP’s Division of Science, Research and Environmental Health, and Jennifer Feltis-Cortese of DEP Water Resource Management and co-coordinator of the DEP Performance Indicator Team talk with Bob Bostock about how metrics such as performance indicators and long-term Environmental Trend Reports serve the public.

To view the Environmental Trends Reports and Performance Indicators, visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/citizen_mynj.html and http://www.yourmoney.nj.gov/transparency/performance/dep/index.html

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Jennifer Feltis-Cortese (left) and Dr. Sandra Goodrow (right)

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Episode 65-Freshwater Mussels with Jeanette Bowers-Altman

August 18, 2017

Freshwater mussels inhabit rivers, streams, lakes and ponds. They are vital to their ecosystems, filtering water and cleaning our waterways. Jeanette Bowers-Altman, Principal Zoologist in DEP’s Endangered and Nongame Species Program, sits down with Gladys Giron to discuss this fascinating mollusk and its status in New Jersey, role in the environment, and how DEP aids in its conservation.

To learn more about freshwater mussels in New Jersey, click here.

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Episode 64-Fish and Headwaters’ Index of Biotic Integrity with John Vile and Brian Henning

August 11, 2017

DEP is responsible for monitoring the quality of New Jersey’s water. One way by which this is done is through biological monitoring. The Fish and Headwaters’ Index of Biotic Integrity monitoring programs, also known as FIBI & HIBI, use fish and other aquatic species as measures of water quality. John Vile and Brian Henning, research scientists in DEP’s Division of Water Monitoring and Standards, Bureau of Freshwater & Biological Monitoring, sit down with Bob Bostock to discuss how the health of fish in streams can help scientists to assess the health and condition of the water, as well as to identify ecological changes.

To learn more about these programs visit http://www.state.nj.us/dep/wms/bfbm/ibipagemain.htm

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Photo: John Vile (left) and Brian Henning (right)

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Episode 63-Ticks with Jim Occi, PhD Graduate Student in Entomology at Rutgers University

August 4, 2017

It’s tick season, and those little buggers are biting with a vengeance this year. For many, ticks and other outdoor pests can put a damper on our favorite outdoor summer activities. It’s important to follow safety precautions to avoid these unwelcome guests on your summer adventures. Jim Occi, PhD graduate student in Entomology at Rutgers University, sits down with Bob Bostock to tell us more about these pesky pests.

To learn more about how DEP deals with mosquitoes, please visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/mosquito/

To learn more about Rutgers’ Center for Vector Biology, please visit http://vectorbio.rutgers.edu/

To view Jim Occi’s website and tick photography, please visit http://jimocci.photoshelter.com/gallery/Ticks-of-the-World/G0000SbPGLWQHnPU/

Dog Deer Ticks with Safety Pin-Photo Courtesy of Jim Occi

Photo Courtesy of Jim Occi

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Episode 62-Island Beach State Park and Liberty State Park with Superintendents Jen Clayton and Rob Rodriguez

July 21, 2017

Out of New Jersey’s 40 treasured state parks, Island Beach State Park and Liberty State Park are the largest and most-visited. With hundreds of thousands of visitors per year, dedicated state employees work hard to make sure the parks are up and running year-round. Superintendents Jen Clayton and Rob Rodriguez talk about the amenities, history and natural wonders that make their parks special, as well as the challenges that come up along the way.

To find out more about Liberty State Park, please visit http://www.state.nj.us/dep/parksandforests/parks/liberty.html.

To find out more about Island Beach State Park, please visit http://www.state.nj.us/dep/parksandforests/parks/island.html.

To find out more about the Piping Plovers, please visit http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/ensp/pdf/end-thrtened/plover.pdf and http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/news/2016/ploverupdate7-16.htm.

 

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Photo Courtesy of volunteer Kevin Knutsen

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Episode 61-Division of Fish and Wildlife 125th Anniversary with Director Larry Herrighty

July 14, 2017

This year, DEP’s Division of Fish and Wildlife is celebrating its 125th Anniversary. The Division has rededicated itself to its long-time mission of conserving wildlife and providing recreation opportunities for generations of hunters, anglers and wildlife enthusiasts. New Jersey is home to a remarkable diversity of fish and wildlife species and hundreds of dedicated professionals to manage these resources. Larry Herrighty, Director of the Division of Fish and Wildlife, sits down with Bob Bostock to discuss the history of the Division, the wildlife that it protects, and how they’ll be celebrating this milestone throughout the year

For more information on the Division of Fish and Wildlife, please visit http://njfishandwildlife.com/.

To view the New Jersey Monarch Butterfly Conservation Guide, please visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/docs/monarch-guide.pdf.

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