🐳 The first stranded whale of 2024 was found on LBI Thursday

🐳 17 whales were found stranded on NJ beaches in 2023

🐳 The DEP will spend $3M+ to make sure wind energy is developed responsibly

LONG BEACH TOWNSHIP — The first whale of the year to strand itself at the Jersey Shore beach was found Thursday morning.

UPDATE: Experts detail injuries sustained by the whale

A 20-30 foot humpback whale was found washed up on the beach at 51st Street in the Brant Beach section of Long Beach Township around 6:45 a.m., Marine Mammal Stranding Center director Sheila Dean told New Jersey 101.5. A team from the MMSC was on the scene examining the whale.

Eleven dolphins and five porpoises have been found stranded on New Jersey beaches in 2024, according to MMSC records. Seventeen whales were stranded on New Jersey beaches in 2023.

The two most recent dolphin strandings were on April 4 in Cape May and Sea Isle City. Both were described as "moderately decomposed" and scavenged. They were both removed by a public works crew.

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Impact of wind energy projects on marine life

Work is moving forward on offshore wind projects despite questions about whether or not they are a factor in the deaths of marine life work.

The American Clean Power Association spokesman Jason Ryan said in a statement there is no evidence that recent whale stranding incidents have anything to do with offshore wind activity off the East Coast.

"Clean energy opponents are spreading misinformation and conspiracy theories about offshore wind. Scientists from three federal agencies say there’s no evidence to link these strandings to offshore wind energy development," Ryan said.

The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has started an environmental review of the Atlantic Shores project. New Jersey energy regulators approved Atlantic Shores’ 1,510 megawatt project in 2021.

It would generate enough electricity to power more than 700,000 homes. The project’s operations plan proposes two potential export cable corridors that would make landfall in Sea Girt, New Jersey, with a second one either in Asbury Park or possibly on Staten Island.

The state Department of Environmental Protection in March announced it will spend $3.7 million for "scientific research projects being undertaken to ensure ecologically responsible development of offshore wind energy," according to a statement from DEP commissioner Shawn M. LaTourette and New Jersey Board of Public Utilities President Christine Guhl-Sadovy.

Whale stranded in the surf at 51st street in Long Beach Township 4/11/24
Whale stranded in the surf at 51st street in Long Beach Township 4/11/24 (Marine Mammal Stranding Center)


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