New Jersey Assemblyman Don Guardian.

ATLANTIC CITY ⁠— New Jersey Assemblyman Don Guardian announced that he has been selected as one of seven state legislators in America to participate in the Aspen Institute, Germany’s transatlantic exchange program, the Laboratories of Democracy Initiative.

The program, which is meant to foster stronger ties between the U.S. and Germany at the subnational level, includes a bipartisan delegation of state legislators from Florida, Massachusetts, California, Washington, and West Virginia.

The group will depart on Monday and spend a week in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern learning about their innovative approach to climate policy and renewable energy generation.

“I’m thrilled to take part in this program, which will allow me to bring back to Atlantic County some of the world’s cutting edge advancements in the field of energy policy,” Guardian said. “Through renewable energy and smart public policy, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern has recently become a net energy exporter within Germany. With New Jersey families facing the growing threats of inflation and a stifled energy supply, it is more important than ever to secure our energy independence.”

Guardian will represent the State of New Jersey in Germany and plans to welcome a German delegation back to Trenton in September. While in Germany, Guardian and the U.S. delegation will meet with ministers in the chancellor’s cabinet and leaders of the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Parliament as well as tour power stations, wind farms, steel manufacturers, and utility providers.

“Representing a coastal community, it is critical that we pursue cost-effective, alternative energy solutions to lessen the damage from future sea level rise and flooding”, Guardian added. “I look forward to hearing about the Germans’ success in chartering a path toward a renewable future while keeping costs affordable for ratepayers and providing good-paying, local jobs to workers in-need.”

Of the 7,383 state legislators in the United States, Guardian was one of just seven selected to participate in the program. This transatlantic exchange comes at no cost to New Jersey taxpayers and is funded by the German government.

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.