Rallying to Save the NOAA Howard Lab
Politicians, environmentalists and community activists are mounting their fight to save the federally-funded marine life research facility on Sandy Hook.
Political and environmental leaders joined together Friday at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's James J. Howard Marine Sciences Lab on Sandy Hook to blast the federal government's plans to close the 50-year-old facility.
Community activists supporting the cause to keep the lab open gathered to hear what they had to say and show their support in the fight.
The contingent of area national politicians and environmentalists has been trying to come up with its own plan to erradicate the federal budgeting edict. The government claims that it can no longer afford to fund the lab and shuttering it will save more than $2 million a year.
The opposition says shutting down the lab will kill ecological initiatives for advancing healthy marine life research in the northeast.
According to a story in the Asbury Park Press, by Kirk Moore, the politicians have yet to get an answer from the federal government as to how, exactly, the Sandy Hook lab's closure will save money.
Surrounding communities have taken up the cause by passing resolutions supporting the fight to keep the lab open, calling it a critical shore resource and educational fixture.
The Howard lab "provides direct access to one of the most important and urbanized coasts in the world and a direct path to habitat assessment and ecosystem based research that cannot be duplicated elsewhere," said Steve Fromm, environmental activist.
A Facebook page has been set up and is dedicated to the mission of trying to remove the closure of the Howard lab from the list of NOAHH facilities slated for closure in the 2013 budget.
See the above photo gallery of the event. Photos were provided by Robert Lisiesky. Also, take a look at Steve Rogers video on the lab and its function.