After months of hard work by many environmental groups and individuals, the Just Transition Caucus of the New Brunswick Environmental Network is launching Greenprint 2021: Towards a Sustainable New Brunswick. Greenprint 2021 reflects the voices of environmental champions and activists across the province in creating a vision for a New Brunswick in which communities are equitable, more self-sufficient, and locally governed, where people actively respect and care for the environment, and create sustainable solutions to our challenges as a society.

Read Greenprint 2021 in full here.

Let us know what your group is doing to help us achieve the vision outlined in Greenprint 2021.

Greenprint 2021 highlights broad points of consensus, although every goal and measure listed are not necessarily endorsed by each participating organization.
Moncton, New Brunswick - On Thursday, the government released its White Paper on Local Governance Reform. Throughout the public consultation process, New Brunswickers expressed repeatedly that sustainable land use planning, environmental and agricultural protection, and climate change adaptation and mitigation must all be properly considered in moving to restructure our systems of local governance. While the White Paper undoubtedly proposes big changes, a working group of the New Brunswick Environmental Network believes that the government could and should make better use of this once-in-a-generation opportunity to bring in tools for more stringent environmental management and true sustainable development at the local level.

The working group argues that the proposed significant reduction in the number of local government entities points to a pressing need for greater regional collaboration on environmental issues that cross jurisdictional boundaries. Careful consideration must be given to any potential amalgamation around watersheds (or partial watersheds), airsheds, foodsheds, or wildlife corridors, not unlike the consideration given to the creation of communities of interest formed around language, culture, and heritage. Climate change adaptation plans, including adaptation for key economic sectors such as agriculture, forestry, and fisheries, must also take a regional approach, understanding that no one community is immune to activities undertaken by its neighbours. Unfortunately, the expanded role of the regional service commissions does not specifically include environmental protection and planning, nor does it give any mention to climate change adaptation.

“When we draw new lines on a map, we need to recognize how natural boundaries, such as watersheds, will impact our communities in the future. While the White Paper proposes major changes, there is an opportunity with this reform to ensure local governments, regional service commissions, and rural entities are supported with increased access to environmental expertise and services such as sustainable land use planning, climate adaptation and mitigation, and natural asset management. This is critical to the development of vibrant, sustainable communities in New Brunswick. Increased environmental expertise and services at these local levels can benefit from strong leadership at the provincial level through things like the proposed Statements of Public Interest, strong environmental laws and regulations, and their proper enforcement,” stated Adam Cheeseman, Director of Conservation with Nature NB.

The working group also argues that municipalities need greater access to various forms of authority, powers and fiscal levers currently outside their purview to encourage sustainability solutions at the local level. This includes more latitude to produce and distribute locally generated renewable energy and encourage energy efficiency at the household level through innovative taxation and incentive programs,
such as Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE), popular in several other provinces, including neighboring Nova Scotia. As for the proposed Statements of Public Interest, they are welcomed, but must not be seen as a substitute for strong environmental laws and regulations and their proper enforcement.

“Municipalities across the country have shown that they are often willing to go beyond provincial and federal standards for environmental protection. The laws that structure our systems of local governance must be amended to allow them to more easily do so. We are pleased to see Statements of Public Interest included in the White Paper, but the devil is in the details and we will be watching closely to make sure these reflect the right environmental priorities,” stated Lois Corbett, Executive Director of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

Finally, since rural residents are often the first to witness adverse changes in our natural environments and are the first to report unchecked and unsustainable resource development, pollution, or extractive activity, environmental groups argue that the proposed reforms and amalgamations must respect the will of the people and must ensure that rural voice remains strong even as smaller communities merge to become larger ones. Social license has now become a prerequisite for development of all sorts. Achieving social license and acceptability becomes increasingly difficult the further removed local residents become from decisions that affect them.

“Any proposal for local governance reform, should recognize that along with language, culture, and heritage, nature and access to nature is a main factor in shaping collective identity, sense of place, and belonging. Local residents live on the front lines of resource development in this province. We generally know what’s best for our communities and we can act as good stewards for the land when given the chance and given a voice”, stated Serge Larochelle from the Groupe de développement durable du Pays de Cocagne.


For more information, please read the NBEN’s full brief here.

For comment, please contact:

Jon MacNeill, Communications Director, Conservation Council of New Brunswick


Adam Cheeseman, Director of Conservation, Nature NB


The Aster Foundation is seeking proposals from registered charities* (or other qualified donees) for projects addressing the theme: Nature + Climate Change.

Do you have a project idea that relates to this theme? Is there a creative or innovative community project you’ve been wanting to do? This might be the moment!

Funding available: $2000
We will support 1 project in the amount of $2000 OR 2 different projects in the amount of $1000 each.

The Aster Foundations strives to donate money back to the region from which it was raised. For this reason, preference will be given to organizations and projects based in New Brunswick.

How to apply:

Your application should be no more than 2 pages and should include:
  • your complete contact information (including website if you have one, or facebook page),
  • your charitable or other qualified donee registration number
  • the amount requested ($1000 or $2000),
  • a brief explanation of your project and how it relates to the theme of Nature + Climate Change, and
  • what you hope to achieve with your project / the impact you hope it will have.

Applications must be sent to before 5:00 pm Atlantic Time on Friday, November 5, 2021.

We thank all applicants for their interest; only successful applicants will be contacted.

*The Aster Foundation intends to partner with NGOs (that is, non-registered charities) for environmental work in the future. However, for this initial round of funding, only registered charities, or other qualified donees, are eligible to apply.
2021 10 16 Noteworthy30 Banner

The New Brunswick Environmental Network is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year and as a lead up to our Eco-confluence and annual general assembly we decided to take a look back at the past 30 years of collaboration for the environment. We came up with a little something we decided to call the Noteworthy 30 – A total of 30 vignettes revisiting key moments and people in the environmental movement and the network’s history.

New Brunswick’s environmental community is strong and full of people and organisations that deserve recognition for their hard work and, while we could not possibly recognize all of them in just 30 posts, we hope you will enjoy this look back at the past.

Thank you to all the individuals and organisations that make our community what it is! Here’s to 30 more years!

Click here to view the Noteworthy 30.

You can view the recordings of the NBEN's Eco-confluence here.


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The New Brunswick Environmental Network has moved! We are now located at La Station at:

232 Botsford Street
2nd floor
E1C 4X7

We are looking forward to continuing to work with you from our new digs!

The NBEN Team

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