This page provides an overview of the steps New Jersey is taking to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

In 2009, during the administration of Governor Jon Corzine, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) recommended the development of a statewide adaptation plan in a report titled Meeting New Jersey's 2020 Greenhouse Gas Limit: New Jersey's Global Warming Response Act Recommendations Report. However, no formal plan has been developed and the Office of Climate Change and Energy within the NJDEP was closed during the administration of Governor Chris Christie.

In November 2011, the NJDEP joined the nonprofit Sustainable Jersey to form a Climate Adaptation Task Force. The Task Force initially developed two educational tools including a glossary of climate-related terminology, and a New Jersey-specific climate trends and projections document. In 2013, the Rutgers Climate Institute published an updated assessment titled State of the Climate: New Jersey. This report provides an overview of recent climate events and trends, their impacts, and their implications for the future of New Jersey.

The New Jersey Climate Adaptation Alliance is an active network of more than 30 non-profit, government, academic, and business organizations working to build climate change preparedness capacity in New Jersey.  The Alliance has produced more than 25 reports that document climate impacts to various sectors, report on stakeholder engagement, highlight funding and financing mechanisms, and that have provided the basis for numerous policy recommendations.  A June 2014 report from the Alliance, Resilience. Preparing New Jersey for Climate Change: Policy Considerations from the New Jersey Climate Adaptation Alliance, recommends a number of strategies to integrate climate impacts into state regulations, local land-use decisions, and government funding decisions in New Jersey.  The Alliance also hosts a climate adaptation directory that brings together geographic data, tools, reports, model policies and ordinances, and case studies. The directory also encourages practitioners to record their climate adaptation efforts and recommend additional resources.

There are a number of other innovative activities occurring in the state. NJADAPT is a collaborative effort undertaken by scientists and data managers in academia, government, the private sector, and the NGO community with support from the New Jersey Recovery Fund, the New Jersey Coastal Management Program, and NOAA. NJADAPT serves as a repository for climate data and provides a flood mapping tool and online self-assessment to help communities increase preparedness. Additional features to address inland flooding and heat impacts are planned.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) is a bi-state agency that builds, operates, and maintains infrastructure critical to the New York/New Jersey region's trade and transportation network, including airports, marine terminals and ports, six tunnels and bridges between New York and New Jersey, and the World Trade Center. PANYNJ published regulatory guidelines in 2011 which provide specific sustainable design standards for transportation infrastructure and include consideration of climate change projections in project design evaluations. The state is also home to a number of the winning projects selected as part of the Rebuild by Design competition.

New Jersey's adaptation planning is underway and is being spearheaded by academic and non-profit leaders with the involvement of state and federal officials.  Other resources from the Adaptation Clearinghouse, which have been developed by the state and localities to help communities prepare for climate change, are highlighted below. 

(Research last updated June 30, 2014.)

The Georgetown Climate Center’s State Adaptation Progress Tracker, which tracks the progress of states in implementing their adaptation plans, is supported by the MacArthur Foundation. 

 
 
 

State Law and Policy

Resource Name Resource Type Date
New Jersey S2815: Drinking water, wastewater infrastructure resiliency program; NJ Environmental Infrastructure Trust (NJEIT) Law and Governance August 8, 2013

State Agency Plans

Resource Name Sector(s) Covered Date
The Garden State in the Greenhouse - Climate Change Mitigation and Coastal Adaptation Strategies for New Jersey Coastal, Emergency preparedness, Energy, Land use and built environment, Tourism and recreation, Transportation January 2007

Local and Regional Plans

Resource Name Date
South Ironbound Resiliency Action Plan (Newark, New Jersey) August 26, 2015
Hoboken, New Jersey Green Infrastructure Strategic Plan October 2013

More Featured Resources

Resource Name Resource Category Date
Resilience. Preparing New Jersey for Climate Change: Policy Considerations from the NJ Climate Adaptation Alliance Planning June 2014
New Jersey Resiliency Network Solutions February 2014
Resilience of New Jersey Transit (NJ TRANSIT) Assets to Climate Impacts Assessments June 2012
 

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