Public Works

Clean Communities

What is the New Jersey Clean Communities Program?

New Jersey Clean Communities is a statewide litter abatement program created by the passage of the of the Clean Communities Act. The program is managed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Treasury, and Clean Communities Council. It’s supported by local governments, businesses, community organizations, schools and individuals who work together to keep New Jersey clean.

New Jersey Clean Communities at the local level involves a three-fold attack on litter: cleanup, enforcement and education. The first step in fighting litter is identifying it. Litter is solid waste that’s 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.

There are seven sources of litter: pedestrians, motorists, overflowing household garbage, construction sites and uncovered trucks. Litter is often blown by the wind until it is trapped somewhere, as along a fence. 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.

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