On February 18, 2019, Sustainable Jersey announced that over $38,000 was awarded to eight New Jersey municipalities for floodplain reforestation projects.
The Roots for Rivers Reforestation Grant and Technical Assistance Program is a partnership among The Nature Conservancy, The Watershed Institute and Sustainable Jersey.
The grant recipients are Oakland Borough (Bergen), Mount Holly Township (Burlington), Vineland City (Cumberland), South Orange Village (Essex), High Bridge Borough (Hunterdon), Asbury Park City (Monmouth), Bernardsville Borough (Somerset) and Springfield Township (Union).
These communities will receive funding to cover the costs of tree saplings and protection. The trees will be planted by local volunteers.
Michelle DiBlasio, the Watershed Restoration Coordinator for the New Jersey Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, said “Throughout much of the state, our floodplains have been deforested and left without trees to help filter water, absorb flooding, or cool the river for fish. One important way to help ensure we can continue to rely upon our precious natural water resources is to restore New Jersey’s floodplains—the critical land near our rivers’ banks.“
“For the past five years, The Nature Conservancy has worked with local, state and federal partners in northwestern New Jersey to reforest the floodplains of a key tributary to the Delaware River, the Paulins Kill,” she added.
Planting trees in places where the floodplains have been degraded will protect the lands and waters on which the people of New Jersey depend.
Here are more details on the funded projects:
- Monmouth County: Asbury Park City, $3,000, Sunset Lake Reforestation Project;
- Bergen County: Oakland Borough, $4,672, Little Pond Brook Restoration Initiative;
- Burlington County: Mount Holly Township, $3,878, Riparian Buffer Restoration at Mill Dam and Iron Works Park;
- Cumberland County: Vineland City, $15,210, Enhancing the Wetlands at the Blackwater Branch and Maurice River EPA Superfund Site
- Essex County: South Orange Village, $3,785, Clark Street Reforestation Project
- Hunterdon County: High Bridge Borough, $1,256, High Bridge’s South Branch of the Raritan River Reforestation Project;
- Somerset County: Bernardsville Borough, $2,200, Passaic River Headwaters Reforestation of Riparian Corridor;
- Union County: Springfield Township, $4,807, Reforestation of Rahway River Parkway Flood Plain
“Sustainable Jersey values our partnership with The Nature Conservancy. These grants will help catalyze floodplain restoration efforts across the state,” explained Randall Solomon, executive director of Sustainable Jersey.
Historic postcards (author and date unknown) are of Asbury Park’s Sunset Lake (one of the funded projects.)