Sustainable Jersey is a certification program for municipalities in New Jersey. This nonprofit, nonpartisan organization supports community efforts to reduce waste, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and improve environmental equity. As of October 2012, 67 percent of New Jersey’s towns and cities have registered to become Sustainable Jersey certified and 125 towns have achieved certification. The program has distributed over half a million dollars to New Jersey communities to support an estimated 1,500 actions taken "on the ground" to make communities more livable, environmentally friendly and prosperous.
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In 2006, the New Jersey League of Municipalities (NJLM) teamed with two environmentally committed mayors to foster environmental progress throughout New Jersey. It was decided that meaningful environmental change at the local level would not occur without the leadership of a hard-working group of mayors. The NJLM Mayors’ Committee for a Green Future (MCGF) was formed.
In 2006 the NJLMs’ MCGF and the Sustainability Institute at The College of New Jersey (formerly the Municipal Land Use Center), in partnership with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities began a collaboration that would eventually result in the public launch of Sustainable Jersey in February 2009. In Winter 2011/2012, Sustainable Jersey evolved from a partnership into a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a Board of Trustees.
Sustainable Jersey Board of Trustees
Led by Chair, Pam Mount (Lawrence Township-Mercer), the Sustainable Jersey Board of Trustees includes New Jersey’s most accomplished leaders in municipal governance and sustainability, including mayors, sustainability experts, accomplished scholars, corporate leaders and innovators. The Sustainable Jersey Board of Trustees has a minimum of fifteen members. Five members, or one third of the board, are appointed by NJLM. Review the Sustainable Jersey Board of Trustees list.
Sustainable Jersey Small Grants Program
Sustainable Jersey provides funding to local governments for sustainability projects. In April 2012, Sustainable Jersey announced that $200,000 is available for sustainability projects for local New Jersey governments for sustainability projects, funded by the PSEG Foundation. Applications are due July 15, 2012. Visit the 2012 Small Grants Program for more information.
To date, $595,000 has been awarded through the 2009-2011 Sustainable Jersey Small Grants program. Eighty grants have been given to New Jersey municipalities representing 20 counties for sustainability projects to make communities more livable, environmentally friendly and prosperous.