Action Alerts


ANJEC 2022 Environmental Achievement Awards 

Application deadline:  Monday, September 12, 2022

To be presented at the ANJEC’s 49th Annual Environmental Congress on Friday, October 14th

Show off your accomplishments, share projects you’ve completed and inspire others!

Click here for application and details.

ANJEC 2022 Municipal Leadership Awards

Application deadline:  Monday, September 12, 2022

To be presented at the ANJEC’s 49th Annual Environmental Congress on Friday, October 14th

Nominate elected officials that have been environmental leaders in your community.  Share the good news about partnering and cooperating in your municipality!

Click here for application and details.


Municipal Stormwater Rights Threat:

WE NEED YOUR HELP TODAY to fight back against the emerging threat to end municipal authority to protect citizens and properties from the escalating impacts of the climate crisis. Several building associations and developers are lobbying the NJ Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to publish regulations that would prohibit municipalities from adopting stormwater management ordinances that are stronger than the minimum requirements set forth by the NJ Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for residential development.

The current DEP stormwater rules explicitly state that municipalities may adopt standards that are more protective than the DEP’s model ordinance, and municipalities have been doing so for years. The DCA’s Site Improvement Advisory Board has been entertaining recommendations from lobbyists to move forward with rules that prohibit municipalities from adopting stormwater ordinances that alter the Residential Site Improvement Standards (RSIS). This is in direct conflict with DEP’s stormwater rules. We are being told that the DCA staff is ready to move forward with drafting and publishing their rules expeditiously.

This is of tremendous concern to ANJEC and a significant number of environmental groups. To be clear, we see this as a move by the DCA to limit municipalities’ authority to adopt local policies that protect people and property from the escalating threats of flooding due to poor stormwater management and worsening effects of the climate crisis.

ANJEC and our environmental non-profit partners have and will continue to have conversations with those in the Governor’s Office, and at the highest levels of the DEP and DCA.
However, we NEED YOUR SUPPORT to tell Governor Murphy, and his administration’s DCA and DEP that municipalities should retain the right to adopt ordinances that suit their own needs and protect against climate threats.

  1. Please adopt this model resolution at your next EC meeting –click here for the resolution
  2. Then, tell us that your EC adopted this resolution so that we can grow our case to protect your municipality’s rights with the strength of your support. Report your passed resolution here.
  3. Request that your municipal governing body pass the same resolution at their next meeting.
  4. Report to us when your local officials have adopted the resolution.

Plastic Pollution Reduction Act.

Governor Murphy signed this ground-breaking new legislation in November 2020.

When does this law go into effect?
Starting May 2022, both plastic and paper single-use bags, as well as disposable food containers and cups made out of polystyrene foam (Styrofoam), will be banned, with some exemptions (bags wrapping raw meat, polystyrene butcher trays, produce bags, newspaper bags, dry cleaning bags, prescription bags and bags holding fish or insects from pet stores).

• Stores less than 2,500 square feet can still provide paper bags.

• The law also restricts food-service businesses from handing out plastic straws, unless specifically requested by a customer, beginning in November 2021.

Click here  for printable/viewable Fact Sheet on the new law.
For more resources and information


One of the many coronavirus fears is about the safety of using reusables.  ANJEC has compiled a list of Q&A and resources to share in your community:

1. Are reusables safe?

– Yes, the short answer is that soap and hot water are effective at killing coronavirus, other viruses, and bacteria. Home and commercial dishwashers are more effective than hand-washing because of the added benefit of high temperature and prolonged washing.

– State health codes ensure that commercial dishwashing will kill all pathogens, and the coronavirus is especially sensitive to soap and heat.

 Virus Spreads Primarily from Inhaling Aerosolized Droplets, Rather than through Contact with Surfaces
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Preventions (CDC), “The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person…between people who are in close contact with one another, through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks .” While “it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes,” aerosolized droplets are the only documented method of COVID-19 transmission to date.

2. Aren’t disposables safer?

– No. Properly washed resuables are safe.

– In addition, according to a recently-released peer-reviewed scientific consensus statement, over 12,000 chemicals are used in food packaging, and many of them are hazardous to human health. Migration of these toxic chemicals out of disposables into our food and drinks is not an issue with non-plastic reusables. 

3. Can I use my reusable water bottle or coffee cup?

– Absolutely. Coronavirus mainly spreads through coughs and sneezes, not your reusable water bottle or cup.

– The best water refill options when you’re out and on-the-go are hands-free electronic water refilling stations like you see at the airport. If you don’t have easy access to one of these, then you can use the tap or the water cooler. Just don’t let your water bottle directly touch the spigot, and be mindful about washing your hands after touching communal surfaces.

– The same logic applies to your coffee cup. Just don’t touch your cup directly to the spigot or coffee pot, and wash your hands.

– Also, don’t forget to wash your bottle or cup with soap and water, preferably in a dishwasher.

4.  What are some tips for using a reusable bag?

– Bring clean, washed bags to the grocery store. If possible, sanitize the shopping cart before you put your bags in it. Many stores offer disinfectant wipes at their entrances.

– At checkout, avoid putting your bags on the counter. Rather, keep your bags in the cart as you pack up groceries.

 – Wash your bags after each trip to the grocery store. Soap and hot water are effective at killing coronavirus, other viruses, and bacteria.

5. My local grocer is NOT allowing me to use reusable bags.  What are my options?

– Understanding the employee safety is number one concern, offer to bag your own groceries
– Choose to put your groceries loosely back in the cart or use a box (e.g., Costco)

– Ask your grocer to stop using single-use plastic:

6.  How can local restaurants reduce single-use plastic?

– Skip disposable cutlery and straws – Save some money and prevent waste by simply not providing cutlery with take-out or delivery options, or only provide it on request.

– Hold off on condiment packets – Consider providing condiment sachets or to-go cups only on request to save money and prevent packaging and food waste.

– For pick-up orders, allowing customers to bag their own orders in reusable bags saves staff time and reduces customer contact while preventing waste from disposable bags. For contactless deliveries, bags may not be needed if food can simply be placed (in containers) at a customer’s door.

–If reusables are not an option, choose better single-use take out containers made from naturally occurring materials. Paper-based items, bamboo plates, wooden utensils, straws made completely from paper, hay, pasta, seaweed, bamboo and more.

7.  What can be done about all the personal protective equipment (PPE) littering our streets and waterways?

– Ask your grocer/retail store if they will put out specially marked trash containers for PPE. Or allow signage asking people to dispose properly

-Post on social media.  Write op-eds.

– On a cleanup, track the amount of PPEs

8. Will coronavirus kill the growing zero waste lifestyle, built on bring-your-own (BYO), reuse, and bulk shopping?

– No, the zero waste lifestyle is here to stay and is gaining more traction every day. While the coronavirus will change many things in our lives for a time, it won’t change our core values like working for healthy people, a healthy planet, and a sustainable economy.

– But just like take-out and food delivery, this crisis is also showing us that we need better systems for BYO and bulk shopping. Hands-free dispensers and methods are part of the solution, as are on-site sanitizing for BYO. In addition, businesses can create new systems to provide clean, sanitized reusable containers for bulk purchasing on deposit – similar to how local dairies are bringing back the reusable milk bottle.

– We have to stay vigilant.  Stay in touch with your township council and community.


Plastic Reduction Tools for Businesses and Communities


What is Single Use Plastic Pollution?

Single-use plastics are items that are generally used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. Most common examples are plastic bottles, bags, Styrofoam, straws, cigarette butts, monofilament fishing lines and balloons. New Jersey residents alone go through 4.4 BILLION plastic bags each year.

Plastics have been found in the food we eat and the water we drink and threatens our $44 billion coastal economy and the 838,000 workers employed in the fishing and tourism industries. ANJEC is here to provide guidance and feedback on municipal ordinance.  Please note that the language in the State bill (S864/A1978) continue to fluctuate and we attempt to provide the latest information.    ANJEC is here to provide you with resources and tools to fight plastic pollution in your municipality.


ANJEC has compiled more tools that can be used at the local level: strategies for public engagement, scientific reports, sample press releases, fact sheets, marketing programs and more.
Email ANJEC or call 973-539-7547 for assistance.

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