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Dee Snider moves way beyond Twisted Sister on heaviest disc

Dee Snider moves way beyond Twisted Sister on heaviest disc

Dee Snider has moved way beyond Twisted Sister on his latest solo album, “Leave A Scar.”By WAYNE PARRY Associated PressJuly 26, 2021, 3:16 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleDee Snider “Leave A Scar” (Napalm)This is not a Twisted Sister album, not by any measure.The latest solo album from the band’s frontman Dee Snider is harder, heavier and more steeped in new metal than anything the former MTV darlings did in the ’80s.Times and tastes change, and 2021 Dee Snider fully embraces today’s metal scene, including the guttural growls of guest “vocalist” George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher that may be off-putting to old-school fans.Snider’s influences help shape his evolution here, including elements of late-’80s Alice Cooper and Accept, with heaping doses of Anthrax-like riffs and backing chants, particularly on “Down But Never Out.”He declares his mission early-on in “I Gotta Rock (Again)” and when he says “I’m gonna rock until the day that I die,” you’d best believe him. At 66, he is as ripped physically as a 20-year-old, and it is easy to imagine him onstage another two decades from now.Snider takes dead aim at the Jan. 6 Capitol rioters on “Crying For Your Life,” dripping with disdain for people who thought they could act with impunity. (He says the song also applies to anyone who refuses to own up to their actions.)Most of this is fast-paced, relentlessly pounding metal, in notable contrast to the more melodic rock anthems he crafted for Twisted Sister. But then again, it’s not 1984 anymore and like a shark, Snider is always moving forward.

They're not blown away by NJ's offshore wind power plans

They're not blown away by NJ's offshore wind power plans

OCEAN CITY, N.J. — New Jersey is moving aggressively to become the leader in the fast-growing offshore wind energy industry on the East Coast, but not everyone is blown away by those ambitious plans.While the state’s Democratic political leadership is solidly behind a rapid build-out of wind energy projects off the coast — it has set a goal of generating 100% of its energy from clean sources by 2050 — opposition is growing among citizens groups, and even some green energy-loving environmentalists are wary of the pace and scope of the plans.The most commonly voiced objections include the unknown effect hundreds or even thousands of wind turbines might have on the ocean, fears of higher electric bills as costs are passed on to consumers, and a sense that the entire undertaking is being rushed through with little understanding of what the consequences might be.Recreational and commercial fishermen have long felt left out of the planning for offshore wind, much of which will take place in prime fishing grounds.Similar concerns have been voiced by offshore wind opponents in Massachusetts, France and South Korea, among other places.Adding to the unhappiness is a bill passed by the state Legislature and awaiting action by New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy that, aside from granting them a public hearing, would remove virtually all control from local communities over where and how the power lines come ashore.“They’re still learning about this, and we’re the guinea pigs,” said Rick Bertsch, who is active with a group of Ocean City residents opposed to three offshore wind projects already approved off their city.Danish company Orsted said in a statement that it is “fully committed to growing the New Jersey offshore wind industry sustainably. Our teams have held multiple open houses and are committed to meeting with stakeholders in the community to educate them on the countless economic, environmental, and community benefits of offshore wind.”The company said it is committed to protecting the marine environment, and already has altered the planned layout of its turbines in one project after input from fishing groups.Most environmentalists and some business groups strongly support offshore wind as a clean, renewable power source as the nation and the world try to transition away from burning fossil fuels. They say the wind farms will generate power that would otherwise be generated by burning coal or natural gas, helping to address climate change — and that the rapid pace of development is crucial to addressing climate change before it becomes irreversible.Many of the opponents, particularly in flood-prone Ocean City, say they believe climate change is real and that a warming planet and rising seas are threats that must be addressed.And while many agree that continuing to burn fossil fuels will only make things worse, some opponents wish New Jersey would proceed more slowly and deliberately, learning as it goes.Three projects capable of generating enough electricity to power 1.6 million homes have already been approved by state regulators — and many more are on the way. New Jersey plans to solicit additional projects every two years until 2028.There will be about 285 turbines built for those three projects, the state says.“Why push this through, trampling all over the rights and desires of the people, without fully hearing from all stakeholders, considering all the financial, ecological, socioeconomic consequences?” asked Suzanne Hornick, a leader of the Ocean City opposition. “It’s going to be an industrial site out there.”She worries residential customers could pay much higher prices for electricity than they do now.Orsted said the first New Jersey project would raise the average residential customer’s bill by $1.46 a month. The state says its second project would add another $1.28 to residential bills. Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind’s project would add $2.21 a month to residential bills.The Block Island wind farm, one of two currently operating in the U.S., has had its growing pains, including a cable that was not buried deep enough in the sea bed, got loose and had to be reburied. Ratepayers are paying part of the cost through a surcharge.Most of Ocean City’s council opposes the offshore wind projects, even as officials in many other communities embrace the technology as an environmental and economic boon. Last week, 110 elected officials from around the state signed a letter supporting what they call “responsible” offshore wind development.One common criticism is visual pollution, the idea that the turbines will be visible from the shoreline and ruin pristine ocean views. Developers say the turbines, projected to be about 10 to 20 miles (16 to 32 kilometers) offshore, will be visible on the horizon under clear weather conditions, but less so during foggy or hazy conditions.A residents group called Go Green and Unseen wants the turbines moved 35 miles (56 kilometers) offshore so they will be invisible from the shore.And while many environmental groups support offshore wind, that support is not universal, nor unqualified. Clean Ocean Action, New Jersey’s leading ocean advocacy group, says it supports offshore wind, but wants to see a demonstration project first, to study and learn from the results.“These first proposals off the Jersey Shore are massive and total over 1.16 million acres — about the size of Grand Canyon National Park, and a law is pending to block communities’ concerns,” said Cindy Zipf, the group’s executive director.“If we don’t get this right, we may learn too late that the ‘Great Offshore Wind Boom’ of the 2020s accelerated the ecological collapse of this ocean realm, the billion-dollar economies it supports, and its ability to help buffer climate change,” she said. “To assuage the sins of our fossil fuel past, we must take care not to act recklessly, threatening the very goose that lays the golden eggs — our vibrant, giving ocean.”———Follow Wayne Parry on Twitter at http://twitter.com/WayneParryAC.

Diners' discarded shells help establish new oyster colonies

Diners' discarded shells help establish new oyster colonies

PORT REPUBLIC, N.J. — Call it the seafood circle of life: Shells discarded by diners are being collected, cleaned and dumped into waterways around the country and the world, where they form the basis of new oyster colonies.One of the latest such projects is taking place in Atlantic City, where a casino and two other restaurants are saving the shells left over from their diners. The shells are then collected by the state Department of Environmental Protection, and workers and volunteers with Rutgers and Stockton universities and the Jetty Rock Foundation load them on barges and dump them into the Mullica River.That waterway is home to one of the last self-sustaining oyster populations on the Atlantic coast, according to Shawn LaTourette, the state’s environmental commissioner. The clam, oyster and other shells form the basis of new or expanded oyster colonies when free-floating baby oysters, known as spat, attach to the shells and begin to grow on them.“You have the benefit not only of ecological restoration, but it has kept 65 tons of shells out of landfills,” said Scott Stueber, a fisheries biologist with the DEP. That helps the eateries save on waste disposal costs.The program began in 2019 and currently collects oysters from the Hard Rock casino, the Knife & Fork restaurant and Dock’s Oyster House in Atlantic City. Several other casinos have expressed interest in joining.“We go through a ton of these shells at our restaurants,” said Grace Chow, Hard Rock’s vice president of food and beverages. “The buffet on a slow day will shuck 500 oysters, and on a busy day, 1,200.”Oysters are nature’s filters: a single adult oyster can can strain particles and contaminants from 50 gallons of water a day. In addition to improving water quality, oyster colonies also are being planted along coastlines as a shore stabilization and storm mitigation strategy: the bumpy underwater colonies can act as speed bumps for destructive waves headed for the shoreline, dissipating some of their energy.The goal is not so much to create new places to harvest and sell oysters for consumption as to improve the environment.In New Jersey, oysters can be harvested for commercial use in Delaware Bay, and the state has a robust aquaculture industry that grows them. The Mullica River project aims to grow oysters for ecological purposes, but it is being studied for possible approval as a commercial harvesting site in the future, the DEP said.Communities, environmental groups and governments around the world have embraced oyster recycling and replanting in recent decades.In Maryland, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation turns 2,000 bushels of recycled shells a year into oyster habitat in the bay. In Texas, the Harte Research Institute at Texas A&M University has collected 1.75 million pounds of shells and restored 25 acres of oyster reefs since 2009.New York’s Billion Oyster Project has collected 1.6 million pounds of shells from 75 restaurants, and planted 13 oyster reefs across New York Harbor since 2015. Florida has several such programs including one in Apalachicola Bay, and the Alabama Coastal Foundation has collected 15.5 million shells in less than five years.In Massachusetts, numerous towns conduct oyster recycling programs including the “Shuck It For Nantucket” program, and similar efforts exist in Wellfleet and on Martha’s Vineyard.The effort reaches as far as Australia, where The Nature Conservancy’s “Shuck, Don’t Chuck” program recycles oysters to restore colonies in places including Port Phillip Bay.In New Jersey, several such programs exist, including one run by the American Littoral Society and another by Long Beach Township.For the Atlantic City project, the state makes the rounds of the eateries once a week with a trailer, hauling the shells to a research station on Nacote Creek in Port Republic. There they are set out to dry for at least six months so that any remaining meat or foreign substances on the shells will bake off.When they have sufficiently cured, the shells are loaded onto a barge and pulled out into the Mullica River. Workers aboard the barge use high-pressure hoses to blast the 10-foot-tall piles of shells into the water, accomplishing in less than an hour what would take many times as long if they were shoveled overboard.About 3,000 bushels of shells will be placed in the river this year. Russ Babb, a shell fisheries bureau chief with the DEP, hopes to eventually increase that amount to 10,000 bushels a year.———Follow Wayne Parry at http://twitter.com/WayneParryAC

New Jersey gamblers can light up Sunday as smoking ban ends

New Jersey gamblers can light up Sunday as smoking ban ends

Gamblers will be able to light up again in Atlantic City’s casinos starting SundayBy WAYNE PARRY Associated PressJune 30, 2021, 8:15 PM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — New Jersey’s yearlong coronavirus-inspired ban on smoking in Atlantic City casinos will end Sunday, just in time for the Fourth of July holiday.Gov. Phil Murphy said Wednesday that an order he signed ending a public health emergency contained a “sunset” provision winding down the smoking ban within 30 days, which is Sunday.While acknowledging gamblers will be free to light up again starting Sunday, the Democratic governor indicated he would look favorably on a measure lawmakers are considering to permanently end smoking in New Jersey’s casinos.“I would be very constructive on that,” he said at a coronavirus briefing, stopping short of saying he would sign the legislation.The governor’s remarks came two hours after dozens of casino workers and anti-smoking advocates rallied on the Atlantic City boardwalk to call for a permanent smoking ban.Casinos are exempted from a state law banning most indoor smoking, while an Atlantic City law limits smoking to no more than 25% of the casino floor.New Jersey has even prohibited smoking on beaches and public parks, which was not lost on many of the rallying casino workers.“How is it that you’re not allowed to smoke on our beaches or our boardwalk, but you’re allowed to smoke at my table where I can’t walk away?” asked Nicole Vitola, a table games dealer at the Borgata. “All I want is the same right that every other worker in New Jersey receives.”Janice Green, a dealer at the Tropicana, has worked in Atlantic City casinos for 40 years.“Being in the business so long, I have lung disease,” she said. “I have asthma because of it. It’s under control now, but if you bring smoking back, I’m going to be back on inhalers, and I don’t want that.”Murphy ordered Atlantic City’s casinos to close in March 2020 during the pandemic, and when they reopened 3 1/2 months later, smoking was banned as a public health measure.“Why is this the only place in New Jersey you can smoke?” said Alvaro Dente, a casino floor supervisor at the Tropicana. “Bars and restaurants don’t allow it. And the casinos are not losing money.”Onjewel Smith of the group Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights said the casino workers at greatest risk from smoking “are the mostly Black and brown women, front-line workers. They are the ones putting their lives at risk every day.”The Casino Association of New Jersey, a trade group, opposes a permanent smoking ban, saying it could cause long-term financial implications.“Going completely nonsmoking would place Atlantic City casinos at a competitive disadvantage with other nearby casinos that allow smoking,” the group said in a statement.Such a ban would lead to fewer customers, fewer casino jobs and lower tax revenue, it said.The casinos say they have spent considerable sums on cleaning and air filtration systems to protect customers.And a considerable amount of gamblers say that smoking is an integral part of their gambling experience.But nonsmoker Tom Cushion, who visits casinos once or twice a week, has loved the smoke-free atmosphere for the past year.“You can feel the difference,” said Cushion, who lives in Galloway, just outside Atlantic City. “That stale, smoky smell — you don’t have that anymore. It’s time to go smoke-free.”———Follow Wayne Parry at http://twitter.com/WayneParryAC.

New Jersey gamblers can light up Sunday as smoking ban ends

New Jersey gamblers can light up Sunday as smoking ban ends

Gamblers will be able to light up again in Atlantic City’s casinos starting SundayBy WAYNE PARRY Associated PressJune 30, 2021, 8:15 PM• 3 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — New Jersey’s yearlong coronavirus-inspired ban on smoking in Atlantic City casinos will end Sunday, just in time for the Fourth of July holiday.Gov. Phil Murphy said Wednesday that an order he signed ending a public health emergency contained a “sunset” provision winding down the smoking ban within 30 days, which is Sunday.While acknowledging gamblers will be free to light up again starting Sunday, the Democratic governor indicated he would look favorably on a measure lawmakers are considering to permanently end smoking in New Jersey’s casinos.“I would be very constructive on that,” he said at a coronavirus briefing, stopping short of saying he would sign the legislation.The governor’s remarks came two hours after dozens of casino workers and anti-smoking advocates rallied on the Atlantic City boardwalk to call for a permanent smoking ban.Casinos are exempted from a state law banning most indoor smoking, while an Atlantic City law limits smoking to no more than 25% of the casino floor.New Jersey has even prohibited smoking on beaches and public parks, which was not lost on many of the rallying casino workers.“How is it that you’re not allowed to smoke on our beaches or our boardwalk, but you’re allowed to smoke at my table where I can’t walk away?” asked Nicole Vitola, a table games dealer at the Borgata. “All I want is the same right that every other worker in New Jersey receives.”Janice Green, a dealer at the Tropicana, has worked in Atlantic City casinos for 40 years.“Being in the business so long, I have lung disease,” she said. “I have asthma because of it. It’s under control now, but if you bring smoking back, I’m going to be back on inhalers, and I don’t want that.”Murphy ordered Atlantic City’s casinos to close in March 2020 during the pandemic, and when they reopened 3 1/2 months later, smoking was banned as a public health measure.“Why is this the only place in New Jersey you can smoke?” said Alvaro Dente, a casino floor supervisor at the Tropicana. “Bars and restaurants don’t allow it. And the casinos are not losing money.”Onjewel Smith of the group Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights said the casino workers at greatest risk from smoking “are the mostly Black and brown women, front-line workers. They are the ones putting their lives at risk every day.”The Casino Association of New Jersey, a trade group, opposes a permanent smoking ban, saying it could cause long-term financial implications.“Going completely nonsmoking would place Atlantic City casinos at a competitive disadvantage with other nearby casinos that allow smoking,” the group said in a statement.Such a ban would lead to fewer customers, fewer casino jobs and lower tax revenue, it said.The casinos say they have spent considerable sums on cleaning and air filtration systems to protect customers.And a considerable amount of gamblers say that smoking is an integral part of their gambling experience.But nonsmoker Tom Cushion, who visits casinos once or twice a week, has loved the smoke-free atmosphere for the past year.“You can feel the difference,” said Cushion, who lives in Galloway, just outside Atlantic City. “That stale, smoky smell — you don’t have that anymore. It’s time to go smoke-free.”———Follow Wayne Parry at http://twitter.com/WayneParryAC.