on Apr 08, 2009
Woodbridge - Mayor John E. McCormac today announced that Woodbridge Township continues to set the pace as a statewide leader in “green” environmental and sustainable initiatives by actively seeking the designation as a certified “Sustainable Jersey” community. “Sustainable Jersey” is a certification program sponsored by the New Jersey League of Municipalities, which provides assistance to municipalities that want to go “green,” control costs and save money, and take steps to sustain their quality of life over the long term.
“Woodbridge Township continues to plan for the future by implementing innovative, cost-effective, sustainable, environmentally-friendly, and energy efficient programs and initiatives geared to provide long-term ‘green’ benefits to the residents of Woodbridge’s ten towns,” said Mayor McCormac. “The ‘Sustainable Jersey’ Program provides municipalities with the know-how and resources needed to plan for a ‘green’ future. And, as a ‘Sustainable Jersey’ community, Woodbridge Township will be eligible to receive the tools, guidance, training and additional financial resources necessary to institute programs and initiatives that provide for long-term “green” savings and sustainability.”
In announcing Woodbridge Township’s application to the “Sustainable Jersey” Program, Mayor McCormac noted that key Woodbridge agencies, businesses, educational institutions, environmental groups and community associations are committed to the long-term project, including: the Woodbridge Township Municipal Council, the Mayor’s Environmental Commission, the Woodbridge Township School District, the Woodbridge Redevelopment Agency, the Woodbridge River Watch Committee, the Woodbridge Economic Development Corporation, and various business, environmental, community and private sector groups and associations.
Mayor McCormac reported that Woodbridge is one of only a limited number of New Jersey municipalities seeking the “Sustainable Jersey” designation. Municipalities are certified after collecting 100 points from a list of sustainable actions (for the full list of sustainable actions go to www.SustainableJersey.com). Woodbridge anticipates that the Township will score at least 450 points by planning, creating, or implementing various sustainable initiatives such as:
• Mayor’s Environmental Commission and Executive Director Chris Adornato, have taken a lead role in supporting “green” and sustainable initiatives;
• Implementation of a $7 million project to install energy-producing solar panels at the Community Center, Main Library, and five other municipal buildings. The solar panel project will save Township taxpayers long-term energy costs by putting in place a self-sustaining source of energy that will provide a portion of the Township’s power needs for years to come;
• Creation of a “green” business recognition program;
• Purchase of energy-saving, fuel efficient hybrid vehicles to supplement the municipal fleet;
• Prior designation of Woodbridge as a Mayor’s Wellness community;
• Designation of 106 acres in an underutilized industrial section for the development and construction of a state-of-the-art Enviro-Technology Incubator;
• Development of educational and instructional programs promoting “green” technology and sustainable programs for schools, community associations and local businesses;
• Opening a modern and efficient recycling and bulk waste “Convenience Center” at the Public Works facility in Keasbey;
• Installation of solar-powered, decorative street lights and trash compactors along primary
• Installation of solar-powered pedestrian crosswalks at high-traffic intersections, including Main Street in downtown Woodbridge;
• Promotion of energy-efficient building and construction by municipal government and the private sector;
• Expansion of the Public Works recycling program to include the disposal of compact fluorescent light bulbs, electronics and computers;
• Replacing standard light bulbs with energy-saving compact fluorescent lighting at municipal buildings and facilities;
• Promoting “buy local” initiatives and creation of a downtown Farmer’s Market for “Jersey Fresh” produce;
• Creation of a tree replacement program in parks and municipal properties;
• Introduction of a biodiesel fuel program to power Township vehicles.
Woodbridge Township Council Vice President Jim Major (4thWard Councilman) said, “The Council is delighted that Woodbridge is in the forefront of environmentally-friendly and energy-saving initiatives and that the Township is positioned to secure participation as a “Sustainable Jersey” municipality. As part of the “Sustainable Jersey” program, Woodbridge will be on the cutting-edge of environmental technology and will be well-positioned to save taxpayer dollars, increase energy efficiency in municipal government operations, and protect the environment.”
“Sustainable Jersey” is an initiative of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities’ Mayors’ Committee for a Green Future, the Municipal Land Use Center at the College of New Jersey, The Sustainable State Institute at Rutgers University, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, the Rutgers Center for Green Building, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, and a coalition of New Jersey non-profit, state agencies and experts in the field of environmental and sustainable projects.