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4/30/2018 - Hamilton Celebrates 12th Consecutive Tree City USA Award for Arbor Day

Hamilton Celebrates 12th Consecutive Tree City USA Award for Arbor Day

This Arbor Day, Hamilton Township celebrated a prominent environmental recognition for the twelfth straight time.

Thanks to the community’s ongoing commitment to shade tree and forestry efforts, Mayor Kelly Yaede has announced that Hamilton has once again earned the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree City USA designation.   

The Tree City USA program, which is administered by the Arbor Day Foundation in partnership with the US Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service and National Association of State Foresters, recognizes communities that demonstrate a commitment to urban forest management efforts, such as having a tree board or department, a tree-care ordinance, and investing at least $2 per capita in community forestry efforts. 

“Our community continues to be a leader in when it comes to environmental sustainability efforts; and our twelve consecutive Tree City USA awards is another example that illustrates our ongoing commitment toward keeping Hamilton ‘clean and green,” explains Mayor Kelly Yaede.

Over the years, Hamilton Township has kept its commitment to the environment by planting trees across the community along public curbside rights-of-way (i.e. along streets) and in public park areas.  Since 2001, the Township has planted 13,382 such trees.

Protecting Hamilton’s Curbside Trees

During the past year, Hamilton secured a $10,000 grant to fund it’s first-ever, community-wide inventory of curbside trees. This effort aims at combating the Emerald Ash Borer – an invasive insect that infests ash trees – and which is predicted to enact devastating damage to ash trees across the state and much of the nation.

Also in jeopardy are Hamilton’s curbside ash trees. Through the grant-funded inventory, Township officials hope to determine the extent of the Emerald Ash Borer problem across the community and – in the future -- replace dying curbside trees. Hamilton’s Shade Tree Commission will play a leading role in the local effort. 

Residents can learn more about the town’s Shade Tree Commission at:

Hamilton’s Many Sustainability Efforts

Beyond its shade tree and forestry efforts, Hamilton Township’s strong environmental record includes: 

  • Receiving the 12th highest recycling tonnage grant in the state in 2017
  • Running the community’s Ecological Facility – a regional leader for not only recycling initiatives, but also in shared services with other local governments (in 2017, the facility collected 253.52 tons of electronics, 225.72 tons of light metal, 161.87 tons of single-stream recyclable items, and 151.05 tons of cardboard along with other items)
  • Installing a solar system that powers our Public Works garage
  • Partnering with the Rutgers Cooperative Extension – Water Resources Program for various stormwater management and conservation efforts, which promote residential rain barrels and rain gardens workshops
  • Holding annual Paper Shredding events (in 2017, these shredding events served 1,400 residents and collected over 19 tons of paper materials.)
  •  Holding an annual Stream Cleanup led by the town’s Environmental Commission (Hamilton’s recent cleanup collected 47 bags of trash and 29 bags of recyclables from local waterways)
  • Assisting in annual cleanups, such as the Bromley Neighborhood Spring Cleanup Day, which is held in conjunction with the CYO of Mercer County  
  • Engaging in the use of garbage collection trucks that use cleaner-burning natural gas (Hamilton was the first town in New Jersey to do so)
  • Continued use of sludge produced Methane gas at our Water Pollution Control plant
  • Creating an Environmental Awards Program that recognizes those who improve our local environment so that we can encourage others to do the same