NJ Clean Communities Overview
New Jersey Clean Communities is a statewide, comprehensive, litter-abatement program created by the passage of the Clean Communities Act in 1986. The mission is to reduce litter in public places, promote the volunteer cleanup of public lands and sustain a reduction in litter through education. The Act provides a funding source for the program by placing a tax on fifteen categories of businesses that may produce litter-generating products. The program focuses on three areas: cleanup, education and enforcement. For more information on the state program visit njclean.org.
Tackling the Litter Problem
What is litter? Litter is solid waste that is out of place. It's the kind of trash found on highways, lakefronts, parks and school grounds. Litter takes many forms: paper, plastics, metal cans, cigarette butts, glass, food packaging, tires and graffiti.
Where does litter come from? There are at least seven sources of litter: pedestrians, motorists, overflowing household garbage, overflowing commercial containers, loading docks, construction sites and uncovered trucks. Litter is often blown by the wind until it is trapped somewhere or goes down a storm drain.
Why do people litter? People tend to litter when they think someone else will clean up, when an area is already littered, and when they do not feel a sense of ownership or community pride.
Why is litter a problem? Even small amounts of litter are unsightly, unhealthy and dangerous. Litter causes blighted landscapes resulting in an increase in taxes and a decrease in tourism and industry; loss of civic pride and morale; and a negative public image. Litter can also cause accidents, especially on roadways, fires and disease in people and animals.
How are we solving the problem? In addition to the efforts of local governments, residents, schools, civic associations and non-profit organizations are enlisted as volunteers to help with cleanup events. At these cleanup events we offer education to volunteers while they pick up litter so they become environmental stewards. With education, acts of littering can be changed!
Pine Hill Clean Communities Program
Pine Hill Clean Communities program is part of a statewide strategy to clean and prevent litter on streets, beaches, waterways, parks, recreation sites and vacant lots. Twice a year, we host town-wide cleanup events in the spring and fall. Civic groups, volunteer organizations, churches and scout troops, as well as residents and businesses, are encouraged to participate in a joint effort to clean up our streets and public properties.
Volunteers must be registered in groups. For example, your sports team, neighborhood,
club, business, etc. Each group must have one adult Group Representative to serve as
the contact for your group.
- Group name.
- Volunteer Group Representative name, phone number and email.
- Expected number of volunteers in your group.
- Mailing address for checks + the name/group for the check to be made payable to.
- Volunteer allergies or health conditions that you are aware of.
- Groups with whom you would prefer to share a cleanup site.
- Preferred cleanup sites if you have any.
Finally, in the registration form, you will find information on the waivers required to participate in the cleanup. Please review the information thoroughly and reach out with any questions.
This post was written by Jeff Klehamer