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FAQs

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  • What is a manufactured gas plant (MGP)?

    • From the 1830s until the 1950s, manufactured gas was used as fuel for street lamps, indoor lighting, cooking and manufacturing in the United States and around the world. Gas was manufactured from coal and coke using the technologies available at the time.

  • What are the by-products of a manufactured gas plant (MGP)?

    • The process of manufacturing gas also produced the by-product coal tar, which is a mixture of hydrocarbon and other compounds left after combustion. The by-products of former MGP sites were largely buried and undisturbed, reducing the potential for contact. 

  • What is coal tar?

    • Coal tar is a black material with an adhesive-like or “sticky” texture, which looks like and has an odor similar to roofing tar. When the plants were operating, the coal tar was commonly used for purposes such as road paving and roofing materials. Coal tar continues to be used today in a wide variety of consumer products, ranging from driveway sealants and other waterproofing materials to dandruff shampoos and skin lotions for treatment of chronic skin disorders such as psoriasis and dermatitis.

  • What are the risks of contact with coal tar?

    • There are no known health effects from low-level exposure to coal tar or its constituents.

  • Who oversees the manufactured gas plant (MGP) projects?

    • NJDEP oversees the restoration of NJNG’s MGP sites and is extensively involved, along with local authorities, in every aspect of the projects. NJNG works closely with NJDEP to ensure compliance with all environmental regulations.

  • How does NJNG keep noise and odors to a minimum during site improvements?

    • During excavation, an odor-suppressing agent is used on the ground. The traffic plan for trucks entering and exiting the site is designed to maximize safety and minimize disruptions to neighborhoods by avoiding smaller side streets and scheduling in shifts. Trucks follow a plan approved by the municipality and avoid peak travel times to the extent possible. Air monitoring is used around the site to safeguard the area from the impact of the restoration.

  • How can I get more information about NJNG’s improvements to former manufactured gas plants?

    • NJNG has a project information number: 888-638-9924 – available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In addition, meetings are scheduled as needed to announce project plans and accomplishments. Meetings may also be held upon request, as appropriate.

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