Sustainable Jersey representatives announced that Harrington Park has met the rigorous requirements to achieve Sustainable Jersey certification. Harrington Park is one of 125 towns out of 378 registered municipalities that have attained certification. Sustainable Jersey’s participating communities represent over half the state’s municipalities and nearly 75 percent of its population.
“The Borough of Harrington Park is fortunate to have benefited from the dedication of the Harrington Park Environmental Commission and Green Team who have led the pursuit of our Sustainable New Jersey certification. Their work has been recognized for its thoroughness and creativity and will go a long way in developing an awareness and appreciation of environmental concerns both in Harrington Park and the Bergen County area.” stated Mayor Paul A. Hoelscher, a strong supporter of this application from its conception.
To become Sustainable Jersey certified, Harrington Park submitted documentation to show it had completed a balance of the required sustainability actions, meeting a minimum of 150 action points to be certified at the bronze level. In addition to reaching 150 points, each community had to create a Green Team and select at least 2 out of 7 priority action options. Harrington Park did 3 of the 7 priority actions by completing an: 1) an energy audit for municipal buildings, 2) a municipal carbon footprint, and 3) a fleet inventory. Harrington Park completed 170 action points in 7 categories, including Community Partnership and Outreach, Energy Efficiency, Greenhouse Gas, Food, Natural Resources, Operations and Maintenance, and Waste Management.
“It’s quite an accomplishment to become Sustainable Jersey certified,” said Pam Mount, Chair of the Sustainable Jersey Board of Trustees. “The certified towns have joined a first rate group of municipalities that are leading the way with impressive sustainability initiatives in New Jersey while providing a model for towns across the United States.”
Certified towns excelled in areas such as improving energy efficiency and health and wellness, reducing waste, sustaining local economies, protecting natural resources, and addressing diversity and equity. “These are exceptional towns with outstanding programs. We’ve been amazed to see how this program has catalyzed community spirit and fostered grassroots leadership, cross-sector creativity and collaboration across New Jersey,” said Donna Drewes Co-Director of the Sustainable Jersey program. Randall Solomon, Co-Director of the Sustainable Jersey program congratulated the certified towns. “Our certified towns are municipal leaders that are making extraordinary contributions toward the long-term goal of a sustainable New Jersey and world.”
Harrington Park is wooded residential town of ~ 4,700 residents located in northern Bergen County on the upper Hackensack River Watershed. Harrington Park is committed to a sustainable future and is working to educate its children and residents to minimize their impact on the environment and preserve natural resources for future generations.
The certification is good for three years. Of the 24 towns that were certified in this review cycle, 16 towns are being certified for the first time and eight towns have been recertified. In Bergen County, Harrington Park and Glen Rock were certified and Park Ridge was recertified.
Sustainable Jersey is a certification program for municipalities in New Jersey. Launched in 2009, Sustainable Jersey is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that supports community efforts to reduce waste, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and improve environmental equity. Sustainable Jersey is empowering New Jersey towns to build a better world for future generations. It provides tools, training and financial incentives to support and reward communities as they pursue sustainability programs. New Jersey is the first state in the nation to have a comprehensive sustainability program for communities that links certification with strong state and private financial incentives, and a fully resourced program of technical support and training. Sustainable Jersey is one hundred percent voluntary and each town can choose whether it wants to get certified and the actions it wants to do in order to achieve enough points to get certified.
Sustainable Jersey’s partners include the New Jersey State League of Municipalities, The Sustainability Institute at The College of New Jersey, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU). Program sponsors include the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Surdna Foundation, BPU, PSEG, New Jersey Natural Gas, Church and Dwight, Covanta Energy, Bay Shore Recycling, EcoMatters, New Jersey American Water, Real Goods Solar, South Jersey Gas, Terhune Orchards, Waste Management of New Jersey, Atlantic City Electric, Citizens Campaign, Concord Engineering and the New Jersey Food Council.
Please visit the Harrington Park Green Team Facebook site: http://www.facebook.com/HPGreenteam