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Greenstein, Bateman Resolution Proposing Constitutional Amendment of Right to a Clean and Healthy Environment Advances

Senator Linda Greenstein congratulates Congressman Donald Norcross on his succession to the U.S. House of Representatives.

TRENTON – A Senate Concurrent Resolution sponsored by Senator Linda Greenstein and Senator Christopher Bateman proposing an amendment to the state constitution that would prevent the state from infringing upon the people’s right to a clean and healthy environment, and would make the state the trustee of all public natural resources advanced from the Senate Environment and Energy Committee today.

“We are currently standing at the crossroads of an environmental crisis that warrants severe and immediate action,” said Senator Greenstein (D-Mercer/Middlesex).  “Clean air and water is currently not guaranteed for future generations because of the destructive habits of pollution displayed around the globe.  The beauty of our landscapes may soon become desecrated from human carelessness.  Science has told us that we are in trouble; we need to protect our land, air, water and natural resources from ongoing abuse so we can preserve a future with a clean and respected environment.”

The resolution, SCR-134, would grant two separate rights to the people of New Jersey:

  • the right of citizens to the preservation of a clean and healthy environment, including pure water, clean air, and ecologically healthy habitats.
  • the common ownership of the people, both present and future generations, of New Jersey’s public natural resources with the state serving as a trustee to conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all people.

After the proposed constitutional amendment is agreed pursuant to Article IX, paragraph one of the constitution, the measure would be placed on the ballot at the next general election occurring more than three-months after the final agreement for public approval.  If passed by the electorate, the amendment would become part of the constitution on March 1 following the general election at which it is approved.

The resolution passed committee with a vote of 4-0-1, and next moves to the full Senate for further consideration.