Army Corps to dredge Delaware River

    Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell is applauding the decision to deepen the shipping channel, but others are planning lawsuits.

    A federal decision to move forward with dredging the Delaware River has once again stirred up opposition from environmentalists, and the states of New Jersey and Delaware. Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell is applauding the decision to deepen the shipping channel, but others are planning lawsuits.

    Listen:
    [audio: 091026spdredging.mp3]

    Rendell says his lobbying efforts to both the Bush and Obama Administrations paid off. He stood with Senator Arlen Specter Monday, touting the estimated 130,000 new high-paying jobs the project will create. And dismissing any potential environmental hazards.

    Rendell: I don’t think we have to apologize for the environmental record of the Rendell Administration I think its the strongest in recent times in Pennsylvania. And I would not go forward with a project destined to hurt the environment.

    Delaware officials claim that the Army Corps of Engineers’ decision to move forward bypasses its permitting process. New Jersey plans a lawsuit.

    Another legal challenge is expected from the Delaware Riverkeeper Network. Maya van Rossum says deepening the river could negatively impact water quality and habitat.

    Van Rossum: These are a bunch of grown up children stamping their feet saying I want what I want and I’m going to do it regardless of the harm it poses to our river and our region.

    The Army Corps of Engineers plans to begin dredging early next year.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.