Program Updates

On a continuous basis, through the help of the Task Forces, the Certification Committee reviews Sustainable Jersey program content and standards, considers and incorporates feedback on the program and ensure actions are up to date, appropriate and relevant to keep up with changing trends, information, and expertise. The committee is also responsible for reviewing, vetting, and approving/denying and proposed major action changes, new actions, or nominations for priority actions. Accordingly, Sustainable Jersey announces new program and action updates every year at the Annual New Jersey League of Municipalities Conference.

 Gold Star Standard

View the new Gold Star Standards in Energy and Waste - a new level of recognition for silver certified communities!  To learn more, click here.

2019 Retired Actions

  • Energy Education and Outreach: Similar activities can earn points under the Residential and Commercial Energy Outreach actions or the revised Community Education action.
  • i-Tree Assessment of Municipal Trees: Initiatives that involve the use of i-Tree tools for Assessing and Managing Forests and community trees can potentially earn points as an innovative community project.
  • Lead-Safe Training Program: Comprehensive efforts aimed at addressing the risk of environmental lead poisoning may qualify as an Innovative Community Project.
  • Vehicle Conversions: Converted vehicles may qualify under the Purchase Alternative Fuel Vehicles action. 

2019 New Actions


Brownfields Assessment and Investigation: 5 to 30 Points

This action awards points to municipalities that have taken steps to assess and investigate properties with suspected or actual contamination to position them for remedial action and redevelopment.  Municipalities can earn up to 30 points by contracting with Licensed Site Remediation Professionals and submitting proof of completion of Preliminary Assessments, Site Investigations and/or Remedial Investigation reports.


2019 August Action Updates

Emergency Management & Resiliency

Climate Adaptation: Flooding Risk: 20 Points

The updated action includes new spotlights.

Land Use & Transportation

Transit-Oriented Development Supportive Zoning: 20 Points

The updated action includes new resources to help in completing the action.

2019 January Action Updates

Community Partnership & Outreach

Community Education & Outreach: 5 to 20 Points

The updated action includes new strategies/options for completing the action, the types of activities that qualify/do not qualify, NEW submission requirements, and the opportunity to earn additional points depending on the scope of work completed.


Residential Energy Efficiency Outreach: 10 to 20 Points

The updated action includes refined guidance, elimination of the Comfort Partners requirement, and a model RFP.

Health & Wellness

Building Healthier Communities: 5 to 25 Points

The updated action includes streamlined guidance, new submission requirements, and the opportunity to earn additional points depending on the scope of work completed.

Land Use & Transportation

Bicycle & Pedestrian Audits: 5 to 10 Points

This updated action is now variable point and allows municipalities to earn 5 points for a bike audit, 5 points for a pedestrian audit, and 10 points if both a bike and pedestrian audit are completed.  New resources have also been added.

Natural Resources

Community Forestry Management Plan and NJUCF Accreditation: 10 to 20 Points

Formerly called the "Community Forestry Plan & Tree Cover Goal," this updated action has a new name and is now variable point and allows municipalities to earn 10 points for a new community forestry management plan and 20 points for accreditation with the New Jersey Urban Community Forestry Program.  It also eliminates the requirement of including a tree cover goal.


Non-Expiring Actions with NEW Expiration Dates

For more detailed information about the previously non-expiring actions that now have an expiration date, please view the Master Action Tracking Spreadsheet, which provides each action's look back, approval period, and resubmission requirements.  Towns approved for these actions have received an expiration date in accordance with their certification expiration.


Previous Program Updates

View Sustainable Jersey's Previous Program Updates to learn more about the modifications made from 2009-2018.