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Hanover Township was awarded a $10,000 Sustainable Jersey grant funded by the PSEG Foundation. Five $20,000 grants, six $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, food waste composting education, single-use plastic reduction campaigns, community gardens, a farmers market, environmental resource inventories, a diversity discussion series, green team capacity building, and more.
Hanover Township’s grant will support “Sustainable Soil,” a pilot backyard composting program for Hanover residents of single-family homes. Composting will help divert a significant amount of organic waste from our landfills and provide nutrient-rich soil to our gardens and community. The pilot program will provide compost bins to collect food scraps. The equipment will be distributed to 100 residents via a free drawing. A series of online workshops and seminars will educate recipients and the public at large on the benefits of composting. “This grant will provide Hanover opportunities to educate and encourage the recycling of more food waste into much-needed compost,” noted Hanover Township Mayor Ron Francioli. “Our community is dedicated to sustainable uses of our environment. The Stoney Brook Municipal Farm and Garden, all organic, is just one example.”
“In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, these grants will strengthen our communities and build the groundwork for finding solutions to the sustainability concerns that are reaching a crisis point,” said Randall Solomon, executive director for Sustainable Jersey. He extended his congratulations to all of the towns that received grants. “By making preparations today to ensure our future wellbeing, we strengthen our communities and help alleviate future disasters,” Solomon added.
The PSEG Foundation has contributed $2.2 million dollars in funding to the Sustainable Jersey grants program for municipalities and schools. “The PSEG Foundation is committed to helping build sustainable and thriving communities by empowering and investing in the people, environment, and infrastructure of the communities we serve, embodying our mission to help build better places to live and work,” said Rick Thigpen, senior vice president of Corporate Citizenship at PSEG and chairman of the PSEG Foundation. “Supporting Sustainable Jersey and local municipalities as they build sustainability programs puts resources where they’re needed to positively impact the environment and local communities, having a lasting impact on neighborhoods throughout New Jersey.”
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. Nearly ninety percent of the New Jersey population lives in a registered or certified Sustainable Jersey community. Currently 455 municipalities, or 81 percent New Jersey municipalities, are registered with Sustainable Jersey.
The Township of Hanover is a certified Sustainable Jersey community. The Township’s Green Team assists the municipality in making strides in sustainability through recommendations and implementation of environmentally supportive programs approved by the Township Committee. The township’s latest initiative, “Sustainable Soil,” was virtually presented by Green Team member Nadia Mian during Sustainable Jersey and PSE&G’s grant awards program on May 14th. The initiative was lauded by John L. Ferramosca, Hanover Township’s Deputy Mayor, and the governing body’s liaison to the Green Team. “I think participants benefitted from hearing about key elements of the initiative and potential benefits for our town.”
Sustainable Jersey is a non-profit that provides tools, training and financial incentives to support communities as they pursue sustainability programs. Currently, 81 percent or 455 of New Jersey’s 565 municipalities are participating in the municipal certification program and 351 school districts and 952 schools are participating in the Sustainable Jersey for Schools certification program.
To learn more about Sustainable Jersey, please visit the following websites: