Editorial: DEP caution with oyster ventures benefits public, shellfish industry

Oysters, NJ environment news

PRESS OF ATLANTIC CITY – The return of oysters as an important part of New Jersey’s shellfish industry has been good news for commercial operators and seafood fans. Oyster farming in Delaware and Barnegat bays provides nearby metropolitan markets with the freshest of these delectable bivalves.

Environmental groups’ interest in oysters has been keen, too, since they have the ability to improve their habitat in much-needed ways. Each oyster filters up to 50 gallons of water a day as it feeds, naturally reducing water pollution. Research also has shown that underwater oyster reefs can reduce the force of incoming waves, providing a degree of protection against storm damage.

Good to eat, a lucrative industry, cleans up pollution and reduces storm damage — no wonder people would like to grow these wondrous shellfish in many coastal waters …

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