About the Green Team
As a sub-committee to the Environmental Commission, the Green Team focuses on working with other groups in town – The Borough Council, Departments, Commissions, Committees, clubs and schools – to help Mountain Lakes become more environmentally sustainable. We use the program Sustainable Jersey, completing actions for certification.
Sustainable Jersey is a municipal certification program open to all New Jersey communities that want to go green, save money and take steps to sustain their quality of life over the long term. The program identifies concrete actions that municipalities can implement to become certified and provides clear “how to” guidance and tools to enable communities to make progress.
Started in February 2009, to date 171 New Jersey municipalities have completed certification and 417 are in the process. Mountain Lakes achieved Bronze Certification in 2011 and has just achieved Silver Certification in 2014. There are only 26 other Municipalities in NJ that have Silver. Be Proud!
The actions we focus on are dependent on what the group wants to do. Everything from protecting the natural environment, trees, water, energy use, conservation, recycling, health and safety. For example, the Fire Department holds Shredding Day and the DPW does all the actions related to recycling. The Shade Tree Commission has done many actions and is actually responsible for 50 of the over 350 points accumulated.
Grants for projects are available through Sustainable Jersey. We got a grant in 2012 for the “Green Reels” environmental Movie Nights, and used it to educate the residents and students on sustainability issues. Other grants are available, so if funding is what is keeping you from being more sustainable, please contact us.
We are on a three year certification cycle and we just finished a round. Our next focus is on the upcoming EcoWeekend. Mountain Lakes has always had Trash Day the last weekend of April and it grew organically. It happens to be the same weekend the Shade Tree Commission holds their Arbor Day Celebration at Wildwood School. The Fire Department started a fundraiser paper shredding event and blood drive. The Police Department soon joined in with their prescription drop off, Girl Scouts set up a table selling cookies, and the Borough Council started a pocket park and ball field cleanup day for sports teams, clubs and town organizations. The groups are still in charge of their parts, but the Green Team is publicizing the whole weekend as Eco Weekend, we are adding a rainbarrel workshop, and inviting other organizations to hold some environmentally friendly activity. We can help get the word out.
If your group is working on a green project or would like to, please contact us. You may be doing something that can earn us points for the next cycle, or I can help you with funding or valuable information on how to get your green project done.
|Marnie Vyff (Chair)||973-335-4469||Marnie@MountainLakesOrganic.com|
|Mimi Kaplan (Environ. Commission)|
|Rich Sheola (Borough Manager)||973-334-3131|
|Mark Prusina (Dir. of DPW & BOE Dir. of Facilities)|