'Green' non-profit group forced to close

BROOKLYN - After 30 years of serving the community, a non-profit group says the hard economic times are forcing it to close its doors.

The Center for Urban Environment is a local champion for building green and environment education, but the high-cost of green technology, the drop in fundraising and the decrease in state funding is forcing it to close.

"It's just sad. I can tell you we are not very happy about it," says Kendall Christiansen, a 15-year veteran of the board. "Unfortunately, there is no way we can come out of this one."

The center gave urban tours of all five boroughs and taught programs in more than 300 schools. Assemblywoman Joan Millman says the center's closure is a big loss for Brooklyn.

"They helped kids understand nature and their neighborhood. Where are people supposed to go now?" Millman says.

By closing, about 40 people lost their jobs.

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