Friday, October 25, 2013

Sustainable JC’s Rain Garden + ART ioby.org campaign launching

Sustainable JC is excited to announce the launch of their Rain Garden +ART campaign

As some of you may know, Jersey City has an aging sewer system.  Because of the current condition of the system, overflows during rainstorms release sewage tainted storm water into rivers and the urban landscape.  Because of these overflows, Jersey City has been levied with an EPA Consent Decree for violations of the Federal Clean Water Act. 

We at SJC believe that more green infrastructure in Jersey City will alleviate this issue substantially and lower the estimated $54 million dollar tab to repair our sewer system by at least 50%.  We also believe that we can educate and engage neighborhoods across the city about this community health issue through the Arts, and so have launched a citywide Rain Garden + ART campaign.

Rain gardens are a low-cost green infrastructure method that allow rainwater and snowmelt to be collected and seep naturally into the ground.  They divert water away from sewers and thereby reduce the load and the amount of sewage released into the environment.  In order to demonstrate their positive effects not only on the environment but also in the social realm by bringing community groups together, SJC has chosen an initial demonstration site of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.

In addition to providing an excellent cost-saving measure for the city, the gardens will provide beautification with native plants and companion art installations located in and around the site.  Through our collaboration with community arts organizations, individual artists, the NJ Tree Foundation and our host site partners, SJC aims to show how connecting social, environmental and economic impacts can transform Jersey City into a more sustainable place to live and work.

In order to fund and install these gardens, SJC has partnered with the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ Tree Foundation and the New York City based crowd-resourcing site, ioby.org.  As a community-based organization, our goal is to integrate the community into the fundraising and implementation process as much as possible.  The Dodge Foundation has generously awarded SJC with a grant to finance half of the project but we still need to raise the other half.  We invite you to support us in this campaign and spread the word!

For more information and to donate, our ioby site can be accessed at: https://www.ioby.org/project/sjcs-rain-gardens-art-campaign.

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