Summit is Honored for Keeping the Community Green
Tuesday, August 24, 2010 • 12:06pm
SUMMIT, NJ - At Tuesday night's meeting of the Summit Common Council, Mayor Jordan Glatt honored the members of the Summit Energy Ambassadors and the Sustainable Community Task Force and presented them with certificates for their work in successfully obtaining the most points for Sustainable Jersey certification of any medium-sized town in New Jersey.
On the 3rd of December 2006, Mayor Jordan Glatt, supported by the Council and residents, created the Mayor's Sustainable Community Task Force. A survey called "Choices We Can Make" was also completed by the community to send along with Summit's submission for Sustainable Jersey. Summit's submission for Sustainable Jersey certification was more than 500 pages.
On November 19, 2009, a Sustainability Champion Award presentation was held in Summit's honor at the League of Municipalities.
Sustainable practices in Summit are at the forefront in New Jersey. There is tremendous community participation and dedication from staff, elected officials and volunteers. Chairwoman of the Environmental Commission, Dr. Marian Glenn, organized a reception before the Council meeting began, including a slide-show of past accomplishments made by volunteers and organizations to improve on the community of Summit's green lifestyle.
"Everyone has worked extremely hard to accomplish what we have in our community to date," said Glenn. "We have several new projects that we are excited about and I want to thank all for their support."
Summit's schools, organizations and businesses have been extremely successful in executing different plans in helping to create a greener community. Washington Elementary School parents created a green committee in September 2008. The committee organized composting, displays and gardens. Together with the Sustainable Action Committee, they created the City-School Green Team to share information and programs at other schools. A Sustainable Internship Program was also created so that young people could volunteer their time to the Department of Community Services Sustainable Jersey Initiative in an effort to offer their services to help better the community.
The Summit Free Market is run by students from Summit's private and public schools. In addition to seasonal market days held at the Summit Transfer Station, residents can shop 24/7 at www.SummitFreeMarket.org.
To achieve a "New Jersey Healthy Community Designation," the city of Summit proclaimed its Mayor's Wellness Campaign in 2007. The goal of the citywide initiative is to reduce the incidence of obesity and promote health among residents through initiatives like walking, biking and encouraging healthy eating choices.
The action plan for a Sustainable Summit and the plan that has helped Summit reach its goals included a variety of different partnerships, some of which include: Free Market (waste reduction through reuse); Municipal carbon footprint calculation; Tree canopy calculations; School Programs; and Rain Gardens and Green fairs.
Several Recycling, Energy Conservation and Residential Clean Power Initiatives have been put into action in Summit in an effort to continue building a greener community. Alternative Fuel Vehicle Purchase Schemes and Anti-Idling Policies have also been put in place to help work towards the goal.
The Environmental Commission, Summit Green Inc., the Mayor's Sustainable Community Task Force, and Summit Downtown, Inc., put together a program to raise awareness about the green products and sustainable practices taking place in the downtown business community. The program was called the "Green Walking Tour."
The Summit Energy Ambassadors is an energy-smart initiative of the Summit Environmental Commission. They are partnered with ANJEC (Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions). The Summit Energy Ambassadors learned how to audit a building for water use efficiency and waste management including composting and recycling. They learned about the building's green features like double paned glass, insulation, energy efficiency and habits of the people using the building. The Energy Ambassadors called local businesses to offer their services to help them save money while saving the earth. In doing so, they have improved the relationship between businesses and the youth of the town.
"It was a cool experience to see the behind the scenes. You always wonder what goes on and we had a chance to find out," said Summit High School Junior and Energy Ambassador Michael Stoke.
For more information on upcoming events to keep Summit Green, visit www.SummitGreen.org.