On the one side are Six Flags and its partner, KDC Solar, and their stated objective to power the world's largest amusement park with solar as a way to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change. It would also fit in with their stated future development plans.
On the other side are the hefty ecological consequences; the clear cutting of 18,000 mature trees and the destruction of native shrubs, ground, leaf and herb cover, forest fragmentation, soil compaction, watershed degradation and the disruption of critical habitat for wildlife and endangered species.
Unless Barr has a heretofore unseen backbone and is able to stand up to the political pressure of Christie and Senate President Steve Sweeney, the pipeline could soon be built in a restricted area of one of the nation's most precious ecological treasures.
The full Senate vote Monday confirming Barr, a South Jersey Democratic soldier loyal to Van Drew, also was orchestrated by Sweeney. When a vote was first called, Barr lacked the needed support; the tally was 19-18, two shy of the 21 required for approval.
TRENTON - The state Senate approved Gov. Chris Christie's nomination to the Pinelands Commission today, renewing concerns about a controversial plan to build a natural gas pipeline through the protected region.
Nominee Robert Barr was appointed amid an outcry from environmental advocates, who were escorted from the Senate chambers for booing legislators over the vote.
He'll replace commissioner Robert Jackson, who cast one of the "no" votes that narrowly rejected a proposal from South Jersey Gas to build a natural gas pipeline along 20 miles of roadways through the Pinelands. Supporters of the project say it will increase energy reliability in South Jersey and create needed construction jobs.