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Gov. Murphy announces launch of statewide Clean Buildings Working Group

NEW JERSEY – Governor Phil Murphy Monday announced the launch of the Clean Buildings Working Group at the Clean Energy Conference.

The Working Group, a collaboration between the Governor’s Office of Climate Action and the Green Economy (OCAGE) and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU), will serve as a cross-sector collaborative of stakeholders and experts in industry, government, building science, organized labor, environmental justice, and workforce development that will inform pathways to greener, cleaner buildings in New Jersey.

Governor Murphy’s bold climate action agenda requires innovative solutions to decarbonize our building sector in order to fulfill the State’s commitment to achieve a 100% clean energy state economy and reduce emissions by 80% from 2006 levels by 2050.

“Accomplishing our aggressive but achievable emissions reduction targets requires a comprehensive approach to climate action, one that unites the State, labor, industry, and communities in pursuit of a common goal,” Murphy said. “Public and private entities must work not only together, but hand in hand with the communities they serve, to explore every possible avenue for climate mitigation. From the buildings in which we live and work to the vehicles that safely bring us there, my Administration remains committed to a multi-pronged approach to emissions reduction in New Jersey.”

“The Murphy Administration is harnessing the power of innovation and cross-cutting partnerships to confront the increasing urgency of climate change,” said OCAGE Executive Director Jane Cohen. “Climate impacts will affect us all, and so the strategies we deploy must similarly involve all New Jerseyans, from business and labor leaders to communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis. The Clean Buildings Working Group will ensure that every voice is heard as we pursue the decarbonization of the buildings sector, a critical component of the Administration’s efforts to significantly reduce emissions while spurring green buildings job growth.”

“NJBPU is excited to collaborate on the Clean Buildings Working Group,” said BPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “Building decarbonization remains a priority of the Board and is a key aspect of the Energy Master Plan. Bringing together a cohort of experts under this one umbrella is a great way to not only develop innovative solutions for a priority of the Administration’s Climate Action Agenda and receive the input of stakeholders, but to achieve the buy in of all of the key interested parties that will help us achieve the best solution or solutions possible.”

Working Group members will bring insight and experience to drive the adoption of energy efficiency improvements and emissions reduction upgrades in buildings – a priority sector of the Administration’s climate action agenda – while supporting critical repairs for low-to-moderate income housing and expanding opportunities for green buildings job growth. At the culmination of this engagement, the Working Group will help guide the State’s strategic roadmap to clean buildings, laying out recommendations for policy, legislative, workforce, and funding strategies to create cleaner, greener buildings that support and benefit New Jersey families and workers.

Along with representatives from the BPU, Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Community Affairs, Economic Development Authority, and Department of the Treasury, the Working Group will include the following members and will continue to grow and expand as the State pursues its climate action agenda:

  • Heather Deese, Dandelion Energy
  • Donnell Baird, BlocPower
  • Mike Psihoules, Fujitsu
  • Amy Cradic, New Jersey Natural
  • Jared Rodriguez, Advisor, LeFrak Builders
  • AJ Sabath, Building Trades
  • Charles Wowkanech, NJ AFL-CIO
  • Debra Coyle, Work Environment Council
  • Steven Gardner, Laborers
  • Ian Leonard, IBEW
  • Kevin Kenney, Operating Engineers Local 68
  • Eric Miller, Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Jason Kliwinski, New Jersey Green Building Center
  • Michael Kornitas, Rutgers Center for Green Building
  • Dale Bryk, Senior Fellow of Energy and Environment, Regional Planning Association
  • Nicole Miller, Principal of MnM Consulting and steering committee member of the New Jersey Progressive Equitable Energy Coalition (NJPEEC)
  • Melissa Miles, NJ Environmental Justice Alliance
  • Andre Thomas, Training Manager, Isles NJ

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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