July 2, 2014
Contact: Karl Wagener, Executive Director
Updated Long Island Sound page: https://www.ct.gov/ceq/cwp/view.asp?a=4608&q=541382
Updated Electricity page: https://www.ct.gov/ceq/cwp/view.asp?a=4608&q=541404
Link to full report: www.ct.gov/ceq/AnnualReport
CEQ UPDATES ANNUAL REPORT ON CONNECTICUT’S ENVIRONMENT
Two summertime updates, both positive: Connecticut is on track for reducing nitrogen pollution in Long Island Sound, and Connecticut businesses continue to use electricity more efficiently
- Connecticut cities and towns stayed on track in reducing the amount of nitrogen discharged from sewage treatment plants to rivers and Long Island Sound in 2013. Nitrogen pollution leads to excessive plant growth which in turn, in hot weather, leads to hypoxia, the condition in the water when there is not enough oxygen to support fish and other marine life.
- Connecticut businesses produced more goods and services in 2013 than in 2012 while using only slightly more electricity. Electricity production is a major source of air pollution, especially in the summer, and Connecticut businesses have been on a long-term trend of expanding the economy while using electricity more efficiently.
The CEQ published Environmental Quality in Connecticut, the state’s annual report on the condition of the environment, on May 28, 2014, but it did not yet have 2013 data for these two indicators.
Connecticut has a specific target for reducing nitrogen pollution in Long Island Sound, part of management plans approved by the federal government and the State of New York. If the current trend holds, Connecticut will meet its target for 2014.
“When people head out onto Long Island Sound this summer, whether for work or play,” said Council Chair Susan Merrow of East Haddam, “or even when they gaze at the water from land, they should take pride in the role all Connecticut residents have played in reducing pollution. Last summer, the Sound was healthier, with more oxygen, than it had been in years. Wouldn’t it be great if 2014 is even better? There’s plenty to do before the Sound is fully healthy.”
“The CEQ has reported many times before that Connecticut consumes excessive amounts of electricity in the summertime, which contributes to unhealthful air quality,” continued Merrow. “Much of that air pollution could be avoided if people used electricity more efficiently, with less waste. For several years, Connecticut businesses have been consuming less electricity to produce each dollar of Gross Domestic Product, which is a very positive trend. It’s time for all residents to step up and do the same.”
The Council on Environmental Quality submits Connecticut’s annual report on the status of the environment to the Governor pursuant to state statutes. The Council is a nine-member board that is independent of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (except for administrative functions). The chairman and four other members are appointed by the Governor, two members by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and two by the Speaker of the House.
The annual report, Environmental Quality in Connecticut, is available on the Council’s website at www.ct.gov/ceq/AnnualReport.