Clean Ocean Action

To investigate the extent of sediment contamination in New Jersey coastal areas, Clean Ocean Action assessed sediment quality using available databases.  These databases were results from federal agency monitoring programs such as NOAA's National Status and Trends and EPA's EMAP/REMAP.


Clean Ocean Action found that indeed there are sites of concern for sediment contamination in New Jersey's coastal waters.    For example, significant toxicity is found at sites along the coastline and is not just limited to urban, northern areas.

Also, there are elevated levels of PCBs along the entire New Jersey coastline (see map below).

The most alarming result, however, is that the coastline of New Jersey is severely under-represented in monitoring programs.  There is no state monitoring program, and federal programs do not extensively survey the NJ coastline.  This is especially concerning for the contamination in New Jersey's numerous estuaries and bays that will go undetected and likely cause harmful effects to wildlife and the food chain. 

For more information about COA's review of sediment monitoring programs and recommendations for monitoring in New Jersey, contact COA's scientist at 732-872-0111 or


49 Avenel Blvd.
Long Branch, NJ 07740

Field Office:

Gateway National Recreation Area
Sandy Hook, New Jersey

Voice: (732) 872-0111
FAX: (732) 872-8041

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