Making New Jersey a Sustainable State: 32 Towns Receive Grants to Advance Goal

on Jun 29, 2021

Funded by the PSEG Foundation, grants help build healthy, resilient and sustainable communities

Today, Sustainable Jersey announced the thirty-two New Jersey municipalities selected to receive a Sustainable Jersey grant funded by the PSEG Foundation. Four $20,000 grants, eight $10,000 grants and twenty $2,000 grants were distributed to municipalities in fourteen New Jersey counties.

The grant awards will fund a range of projects including green infrastructure implementation, stormwater management and floodplain restoration; green business certification programs, buy-local campaigns, farmers markets and sustainable take-out container campaigns; community and pollinator gardens; energy efficiency upgrades and studies; educational campaigns focused on a variety of sustainability issues such as water conservation, food waste, recycling, and single-use plastics; general green team support and more.

“Congratulations to the municipalities that received grant funding today. I continue to be amazed by what is possible when elected officials, municipal staff, green teams and community members work together to create vibrant and sustainable communities,” said Randall Solomon, executive director for Sustainable Jersey. “These grants will build capacity as municipalities move sustainability programs forward.”

The PSEG Foundation has contributed $2.5 million dollars in funding to the Sustainable Jersey grants program for municipalities and schools. “The PSEG Foundation is committed to helping build sustainable communities by empowering and investing in the people, environment and infrastructure of the communities we serve,” said Calvin Ledford, PSEG director of Corporate Social Responsibility and president of the PSEG Foundation. “Supporting Sustainable Jersey and local municipalities, schools and school districts puts resources where they’re needed to positively impact the environment and local communities, having a lasting impact on neighborhoods throughout New Jersey.”

SUSTAINABLE JERSEY GRANT RECIPIENTS (project descriptions and select quotes below):

Four $20,000 Grant Recipients: High Bridge Borough, Long Branch City, Montgomery Township and Secaucus Town

Eight $10,000 Grant Recipients: Belleville Township, East Greenwich Township, Glen Ridge Borough, Howell Township, Mount Laurel Township, Paterson City, Pompton Lakes Borough and Sayreville Borough

Twenty $2,000 Grant Recipients: Andover Township, Asbury Park City, Atlantic Highlands Borough, Berkeley Heights Township, Bogota Borough, Chesterfield Township, Colts Neck Township, East Orange City, Gloucester City, Harrington Park Borough, Jersey City, Merchantville Borough, Mountain Lakes Borough, Parsippany-Troy Hills Township, Plainfield City, Readington Township, Roosevelt Borough, Runnemede Borough, Westfield Town and Woodbridge Township Proposals were evaluated by an independent Blue-Ribbon Selection Committee.

The Sustainable Jersey grants are intended to help municipalities make progress toward a sustainable future in general, and specifically toward Sustainable Jersey certification.

 

Recipients of $20,000 Sustainable Jersey Project Grants

County

Municipality

Project Title

Project Summary

Hudson

Secaucus Town

Community Greenhouse

The new community greenhouse will use modern technology and a sustainable design. Solar panels and a rain-harvesting irrigation system will be installed. The greenhouse will support the municipal community garden program, educational workshops and a hands-on horticulture curriculum for public school students.

Hunterdon

High Bridge Borough

"Love High Bridge" Commons Pathway Restoration

The easement between The Commons Park parking lot and Main Street will be restored in order to create a pathway that will bridge the gap between local businesses, attractions, historical sites and nature trails. This project is phase one of a town-wide, support-local initiative called “Love High Bridge”.

Monmouth

Long Branch City

Environmental Resource Inventory (ERI) Update

The City’s 2010 ERI will be updated to reflect significant growth in commercial and residential construction. Consequences of climate change, such as flooding, pose a unique challenge to this coastal community and the ERI will be a critical planning tool to manage this sustainability issue along with others.

Somerset

Montgomery Twp

Stormwater Basin Retrofit Pilot Program

The Township is ready to retrofit existing stormwater basins into more sustainable “bio-basins” as recommended in the 2020 ERI. A feasibility study will be used to identify target priority areas and the best design options to use in order to maximize stormwater management success and cost-effectiveness.

 

Recipients of $10,000 Sustainable Jersey Project Grants

County

Municipality

Project Title

Project Summary

Burlington

Mount Laurel Twp

Farmers Market: Increasing Accessibility to Local Food

A farmers market will be created among the Rancocas Woods Village Shops, a crafters co-op of approximately 50 crafters and antique dealers. Not only will the market help support the local economy, it will also be outfitted to accept SNAP EBT cards in order to increase equitable access to fresh local produce.

Essex

Belleville Twp

Water Conservation Education and Outreach Program

A water conservation education and outreach program will be created in partnership with the Passaic Valley Sewage Commission and NJ Sports and Exposition Authority to teach residents, businesses, and school children about the importance of water stewardship. The Township will not only save water, a limited resource, but money as well.

Essex

Glen Ridge Borough

Waste Reduction Education and Outreach Program

A recycling education campaign aimed to increase community compliance with existing guidelines and educate residents on new initiatives will be created. The Borough will expand collection services to include food waste via a new drop off location, encourage “freecycling”, and educate the public on what happens to waste when it leaves the community.

Gloucester

East Greenwich Twp

Outdoor Environmental Information Center

An outdoor environmental information center will be built within Mickleton Park. A pavilion will house eight bulletin boards that will include information on the Township’s sustainability initiatives and various environmental issues. QR codes will be used to link visitors to more information to guide them in practicing sustainability in their lives.

Middlesex

Sayreville Borough

Community Garden

With help from Rutgers Cooperative Extension, the Borough will create its first community garden at its Senior Center. The space will be designed to be fully-accessible for all residents, regardless of age or ability, so that anyone wishing to practice gardening or grow their own produce will have the opportunity.

Monmouth

Howell Twp

Plastic Pollution Solutions Project

An education and outreach program called “Plastic Pollution Solutions” will be created to teach residents about the sustainability issues surrounding single-use disposable plastic water bottles. A public water bottle refilling station will be installed and plastic reduction activities, events, and educational materials will be created and available to residents.

Passaic

Paterson City

Inspiring Community Action on Sustainability Initiatives

In order to inspire community action, a variety of stakeholders including residents, schools, community groups, local non-profit organizations and businesses will be brought together to work towards the City’s sustainability goals. An inaugural green fair will be held so that residents can learn about the community’s shared vision for a sustainable Paterson and how they can get involved.

Passaic

Pompton Lakes Borough

Restoring the

Shores of the

Ramapo River

As part of its efforts to achieve the Sustainable Jersey Gold Star Standard in Water, the Borough will restore the floodplains of the Ramapo River. This project will reduce stormwater run-off and increase water quality through the replacement of invasive species with flood-resistant native plantings. An educational and outreach component will teach residents about water issues and provide project updates.

 

Recipients of $2,000 Sustainable Jersey Green Team Support Grants

County

Municipality

Project Title

Bergen

Bogota Borough

Senior Center Energy Efficiency Education Initiative

Bergen

Harrington Park Borough

Floodplain Restoration Tree Planting Project

Burlington

Chesterfield Twp

Community Backyard Composting Education Program

Camden

Gloucester City

"Rethink your Drink" Campaign

Camden

Merchantville Borough

Promoting Food Security Through Edible Landscapes

Camden

Runnemede Borough

Green Team Support: Website Development

Essex

East Orange City

Small Tools Lending Library Program

Hudson

Jersey City

Green Business Certification Program

Hunterdon

Readington Twp

Natural Resource Inventory Interactive Map

Middlesex

Woodbridge Twp

Water Conservation Education Workshops

Monmouth

Asbury Park City

Composting Education Pilot Program

Monmouth

Atlantic Highlands Borough

Community Pollinator Garden

Monmouth

Colts Neck Twp

Green Team Support: Education and Outreach

Monmouth

Roosevelt Borough

Sustainability Education and Outreach Program

Morris

Mountain Lakes Borough

Growing our Green Team Presence in the Community

Morris

Parsippany-Troy Hills Twp

Distributed Energy Resource System (DER) Feasibility Study

Sussex

Andover Twp

Buy Local Guide

Union

Berkeley Heights Twp

Adopt-A-Drain Program

Union

Plainfield City

Urban Community Garden

Union

Westfield Town

Guilt-free Takeout: Reusable Container Pilot Program

 

 

 

Quotes Provided by Mayors, Municipal Contacts and Green Team Members: QUOTES FROM SELECT GRANT RECIPIENTS

 

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