The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) today announced six communities that will be piloting updates to the agency's Clean Community Challenge. The Clean Community Challenge is a voluntary program that recognizes and assists Indiana cities or towns that take proactive and positive environmental actions to promote community sustainability.
This year, IDEM is piloting expanded project offerings including community gardens, curbside recycling, composting, and more. The 2021 pilot communities are Beech Grove, Brown County, Fishers, Merrillville, Richmond, and Zionsville. These communities are testing new levels of membership, expanded project choices, and reduced paperwork requirements. In partnership with the IU Office of Sustainability, some pilot communities will receive a Fellow at no cost to assist with implementation of sustainable best practices.
IDEM is working closely with an advisory committee comprised of representatives from Accelerate Indiana Municipalities, the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs, the IU Environmental Resilience Institute, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, local municipalities, and Earth Charter Indiana to implement the improvements to the program.