Often overlooked in comparison to its neighbors New York and Pennsylvania, the state of new jersey is an important player in the regional economic, social, and political landscape. Despite being the fourth smallest state in the US, it ranks 11th in population and is a highly urbanized area that is largely anchored in the Northeast Megalopolis, between Boston and New York City to the northeast and Philadelphia and Baltimore to the southwest.
Physical features and ecosystems vary greatly across the state, with some areas dominated by mountains, forests, or rivers. Some of the most notable features are the ridge and valley regions of the northwest, the Pine Barrens and the Palisades facing Manhattan, and the broad marshes and swampland in the northeast.
The Pine Barrens and the coastal marshes are home to a number of endangered plant species. The bogs are dominated by white cedar and hemlock, while the marshes are a patchwork of oaks, sugar maples, birches, ashes, and other deciduous trees.
A vast network of lakes and ponds spans most of the state’s surface, with several major waterways and many smaller streams. The largest is Lake Hopatcong, in Sussex and Morris counties.
Other rivers include the Delaware River, which separates New Jersey from Pennsylvania, and the Hudson River, a boundary between North and Central Jersey.
In addition, New Jersey has a large number of lakes and reservoirs throughout the state. Some are natural, while others are artificial.
Climate and weather: The state’s climate is characterized by hot summers and mild winters, with temperatures ranging from above 70 degF in the northern region to below freezing in the southern portion. The climate is influenced by the influence of the Atlantic Ocean, which runs almost the entire length of the state and acts as an insulator.
The state’s topography is varied, with some areas dominated by mountains, such as the Rockies in the north, and other areas based on the Atlantic Coastal Plain. The state is divided into four distinct physical regions: the Ridge and Valley section of the northwest, the Highlands to the south, the Piedmont in the center, and the Atlantic Coastal Plain to the east.
Tourism: The state is a popular vacation destination, attracting millions of visitors every year. Among the most popular attractions are the beaches, barrier islands, and boardwalks of the Atlantic coast. The beach cities of Cape May and Atlantic City, as well as many other resort towns, also draw tourists from neighboring states and abroad.
Sports: The state is home to some of the country’s top collegiate and professional teams in football, soccer, and hockey. The New Jersey Devils, a member of the NHL, play in MetLife Stadium; the New York Jets and the New York Giants share a stadium in Newark.
Agriculture: The state produces a variety of agricultural products, including nursery stock, vegetables, fruits, livestock, and dairy products. Moreover, the state is an important exporter of goods.
The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) administers a wide range of business incentives and financing programs to help businesses grow and expand in the state. The agency’s mission is to support the growth and success of business, particularly small businesses, by nurturing innovation and promoting investment in technology.