What is a Green Amendment?
Green Amendments are self executing provisions added to the bill of rights section of a constitution that recognize and protect the rights of all people, including future generations, to pure water, clean air, a stable climate, and healthy environments.
What's Happening in New Jersey?
While first proposed in 2017, the New Jersey Green Amendment has yet to receive the support of legislators necessary for the people to have their say on whether they want to add constitutional environmental rights to article 1 of their state constitution.
As proposed the New Jersey Green Amendment would read:
Article 1 will be amended to add...
- Every person has a right to a clean and healthy environment, including pure water, clean air, and ecologically healthy habitats, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic, and esthetic qualities of the environment. The State shall not infringe upon these rights, by action or inaction.
- The State’s public natural resources, among them its waters, air, flora, fauna, climate, and public lands, are the common property of all the people, including both present and future generations. The State shall serve as trustee of these resources, and shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all people.
- This paragraph and the rights stated herein are (1) self-executing, and (2) shall be in addition to any rights conferred by the public trust doctrine or common law.
To learn more about how the New Jersey Green Amendment will help to provide essential protections for New Jersey's environment, for environmental justice, for addressing the climate crisis and for protecting present and future generations check out the Resources Page of this website.
You can also view this 6 minute clip of the 2018 hearing on the amendment – the testimony is interesting, insightful and educational.
When did the NJ Green Amendment get a hearing: The New Jersey Green Amendment did receive a hearing before the Senate Environment Committee in 2018 and was passed with bi-partisan and majority support. But since that time the NJ legislative leadership has refused to provide a hearing that would allow the amendment to proceed through the legislative process and to the people. In response, on June 16, 2022, organizations and residents from New Jersey joined with legislative champions to urge the NJ legislative leadership to schedule hearings in the Assembly and Senate on the NJ Green Amendment. Watch the press conference here.
The New Jersey Green Amendment will get a hearing before the Senate Environment and Energy Committee on March 7, 2024. Perhaps government leaders are finally listening??? Please show up to make sure your voice is heard.
Please check out our Take Action page to see how you can make your voice heard and the opportunities to get active and engage.
View all the sponsors of the bill here.
Who are our Lead Partners in the state?
How and When
did this all start in the great state of New Jersey?
November 30, 2017, New Jersey Assemblyman Tim Eustace, joined by Maya van Rossum, the Delaware Riverkeeper, Assemblywoman Pinkin and Assemblywoman Sumpter, announced new legislation that, if passed, would amend Article 1 of the state constitution to recognize that “Every person has a right to a clean and healthy environment….”, that the State has a duty to serve as trustee of the state’s natural resources, and must conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all people. Since its original proposal there has been significant forward progress.
You can also help us demonstrate support for passage of a New Jersey Green Amendment by signing the petition today and be sure to share it with your friends. Read the petition and sign on here