DEP AWARDS NINE COUNTIES
A TOTAL OF $2.4 MILLION TO CLEANUP SCRAP TIRE PILES
Part of Statewide
Effort to Control West Nile Virus
TOWNSHIP In an effort to help prevent the spread of the West Nile virus,
Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell today
hosted an event in Monroe Township, Gloucester County to remind the public to
clear their properties of any standing waters, which are prime breeding sites
for mosquitos that may carry the virus. To further help in this effort, Commissioner
Campbell announced that DEP is awarding grants totaling $2.4 million to nine counties
to help them cleanup scrap tire piles, another ideal site where mosquitos can
Included in the awards is $750,000 for Gloucester
County to cleanup of one of the largest scrap tire piles in New Jersey
also the site of todays event.
One of the strongest
defenses in combating the West Nile virus is reducing the number of mosquitos
that can carry the virus, said Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell. DEP
is using several methods to control the mosquito population statewide. Part of
that statewide effort is to assist our partners in county government by awarding
$2.4 million to help clear scrap tire piles in their communities.
Nile virus is a mosquito-borne disease that can cause encephalitis, an infection
that causes inflammation of the brain. People can become infected with the virus
after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
when allowed to accumulate even minimal amounts of water have the potential of
becoming breeding grounds for mosquitos. During the course of one season, April
through October, thousands of mosquitos can be bred from just one tire.
purpose of the nine grants issued under the Scrap Tire Pile Remediation Fund is
to help clean up some of the largest collections of discarded tire pile sites
in New Jersey. In addition to Gloucester, the other eight grant awards went to:
Salem County for $721,000; Hunterdon County for $300,000; Burlington County for
$121,500; Somerset County for $30,000; Morris County for $30,000; Cape May County
for $30,000; Bergen County for $30,000; and, Atlantic County for $250,000.
year no positive human cases have been identified, however the virus has been
detected in birds and mosquitos. To help control the spread of the virus, DEPs
nationally recognized Mosquito Control Program has developed a series of cost-effective
and environmentally sound methods to reduce mosquito populations. These include:
a bio- control program to stock freshwater areas around the state with mosquito
larvae-eating fish, Gambusia affinis; a wetlands management program using
Open Marsh Water Management strategies and Best Management Practices for Mosquito
Control on Freshwater Wetlands, which eliminate breeding habitat and improve the
wetland ecology at the same time; and, a state equipment program that applies
approved mosquito specific insecticides.
Jersey residents contracted the West Nile virus in 2001. I urge the public to
take precautions to protect themselves from the virus. Dispose of old tires, empty
buckets and kiddy pools and take steps to prevent insect bites," said Commissioner
To protect themselves from mosquito bites, people
should make sure their window and door screenings are in good repair. People should
also wear protective clothing such as long-sleeve shirts and pants when going
outside at times when mosquitos are most likely to bite - dawn or dusk. Mosquito
repellents can be very effective and should be applied to clothing or skin.
Jerseys West Nile virus and mosquito control efforts are done through an
interagency collaboration with the departments of Agriculture, Health and Senior
Services and Rutgers University. All of the coordinated efforts of the states
mosquito surveillance program are funded through the DEPs State Mosquito
Control Commission. The Department of Health and Senior Services monitors and
tests birds since it is typically from birds that mosquitos contract and spread
this virus. The Department of Agriculture performs horse surveillance and testing.
county is required to have plans and measures for the surveillance and control