Thursday, March 5, 2009

Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District

Last month, the Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District (LPCCD) joined our friends and partners across the nation in celebrating the passage of the economic recovery package signed by President Barack Obama. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 promises $500 million in funding for green job training nationwide, an issue LPCCD advocated for with its friends at Green for All and the Apollo Alliance. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 also provides increased funding, extended tax incentives and grants to encourage renewable energy projects, energy savings and green jobs. Green collar job training and renewable energy programs promise to place America on a path of energy independence and economic renaissance.

According to chair of the newly formed Green Jobs and the New Economy Subcommittee, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), "there is no better moment to move forward aggressively on energy efficiency and creating new sustainable energy and creating jobs in the process." Green job creation must be our most urgent concern.

LPCCD is helping to create a cleaner, greener more energy efficient New Jersey. As a national leader in urban sustainable development, LPCCD Executive Director, Baye Adofo-Wilson, is transforming Newark, New Jersey's historic Lincoln Park, from a low income community to an urban eco-village including green housing, music festivals and urban farming. Baye has been one of the driving forces behind the development of two green collar job training programs. One is an entry level program that focuses on energy auditing and weatherization. The other program is geared toward developing the mechanical construction trades and renewable energy.

As part of the urban eco-village, LPCCD completed the first US Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design mixed-use and multi-family, affordable housing project in State of New Jersey. This is also the City of Newark's first mixed-use housing project with solar power panels, which were installed by local residents.

The State of New Jersey is well positioned to engage its communities in building a green economy. However, New Jersey will only realize a sustainable economy by using renewable energy, conserving energy and developing partnerships and training programs that create career pathway out of poverty jobs.

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