MAINSTREAMING GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE
Years ago, green building standards, such as LEED, were considered eccentric and expensive. Now, they are mainstream and understood to be the smart way to build. The same thing is happening with green infrastructure. An important paradigm shift has accelerated the mainstreaming process: the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) updated its stormwater rule, which took effect in March 2021, to mandate the use of green infrastructure to meet the rule’s stormwater management requirements. The implications of this rule change will affect many, but not all, developments.
However, there is more work to be done to promote green infrastructure in order to improve water quality, reduce flood risk, and increase walkability in New Jersey municipalities. This internship will research some of the key questions in green infrastructure advocacy in the state. Ultimately, the work of the intern will contribute to New Jersey Future’s goal of promoting healthy, equitable, and resilient communities.
New Jersey Future’s (NJF’s) Mainstreaming Green Infrastructure (MGI) program seeks two current college students or recent graduates to research green infrastructure in New Jersey and other states.
Potential research questions include:
- In which states does the state department of transportation implement green infrastructure effectively? What lessons from these states can be applied to New Jersey?
- In towns that have updated their Stormwater Control Ordinances as required by the NJDEP through the Stormwater Rule updates, are the requirements for green infrastructure being enforced? Who is in charge of enforcement? Are there any examples of the ordinances kicking in to require green infrastructure in a new warehouse or large development?
- Where are 100 sites in the William Penn Foundation (WPF) cluster areas with large parking lots that do not yet have green infrastructure? Use impervious coverage data from NJDEP and Google Maps Street View to investigate this question.
- Conduct research projects as assigned, following the guidance of NJF staff.
- Write short internal reports to document findings.
- Write a blog post to publicize results at the end of the internship.
- Complete other tasks to support the MGI program as needed, including note-taking at meetings.
- Experience gathering information through online research and stakeholder outreach.
- Strong writing, citation, and communication skills.
- Demonstrated ability to manage multiple work items at once.
- Ability to work independently in a remote/hybrid working environment, depending on the circumstances.
- Current college student or recent graduate.
- Interest in environmental sustainability, stormwater management, and/or government.
This position pays $18/hour, 10 hours/week, for 10 weeks starting in Jan. 2022. The MGI team will work with the successful candidates to determine the internship start and end dates.
Founded in 1987, New Jersey Future is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that promotes sensible and equitable growth, redevelopment, and infrastructure investments to foster healthy, strong, resilient communities; protect natural lands and waterways; increase transportation choices beyond cars; provide access to safe, affordable, and aging-friendly neighborhoods; and fuel a strong economy for everyone. New Jersey Future does this through original research, innovative policy development, coalition-building, advocacy, and hands-on strategic assistance. Embracing differences and advancing fairness is central to New Jersey Future’s mission and operations. New Jersey Future is firmly committed to pursuing greater justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion through its programs, internal operations, and external communications. New Jersey Future is based in downtown Trenton, NJ. For more information, visit www.njfuture.org.
Interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to [email protected] by Dec. 10, 2021. Please write “Green Infrastructure Research Intern Application” in the subject line.
New Jersey Future employees are working on a hybrid work-from-home and in-office schedule. Staff will work with the successful candidates to determine whether their schedule will be hybrid or remote.