The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is awarding 38 grants totaling $1.3M to promote the stewardship of urban and community trees and forests throughout the state. The grants support Governor Phil Murphy’s environmental justice initiatives in vulnerable neighborhoods, with 75% of the funds awarded to municipalities with at least one overburdened community.
Some grants support resilience planning to help communities assess their current urban forest and provide critical data about the forest’s structure and composition. These data may then be used to better inform forest management decisions to maximize ecological benefits and create a sustainable urban forest.
The program also provides reforestation and tree planting grants to ensure the growth and establishment of trees and forests that best suit the needs and goals of their communities. Municipalities receiving grants in this category use funding to increase their urban canopy, increase the ecological services of their urban and community forest, and provide a cooler place to live.
Funding for the grants comes from the state’s Treasure Our Trees license plate sales and the New Jersey Forest Service No Net Loss Compensatory Reforestation Program. For more information about the New Jersey Urban & Community Forestry Stewardship grants and related programs, click here.