Sustainable Jersey is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that provides tools, training and financial incentives to support and reward communities to develop sustainability programs.
The focus of Sustainable Jersey is a certification program for municipal governments in New Jersey that are engaged in sustainable development. The certification is a rigorous and meaningful designation, and there are many actions that municipalities can choose from in order to achieve the certification. State agencies participate in policy development for the program and integrate Sustainable Jersey into their existing grant programs as bonus points to provide an incentive for municipalities to participate.
Sustainable Jersey towns and cities implement practices that lead to cost savings in energy, water and garbage bills. The program helps communities improve efficiency, cut waste and stimulate their local economies. Registered towns get special priority access and notification of incentives and grants, and are eligible for the Sustainable Jersey Small Grants Program. As of 2017, this program has funded over $2 million in grants to towns for community-based sustainability projects in New Jersey.
Beyond the Small Grants Program, Sustainable Jersey identifies additional resources to help municipalities develop a comprehensive sustainable community program. This includes financial resources in the form of grants and incentives, and technical support in the form of trainings, access to support organizations, and guidance material.
In February 2014, Sustainable Jersey launched the NJ Resiliency Network, a program that helps communities to access technical and financial resources to address long-term recovery and resiliency issues for post-Sandy municipalities in New Jersey.