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IDEM COVID-19 Actions

Effective June 1, 2021, masks are no longer required in state facilities except for anyone inside any of these state government congregate facilities – state prisons, state hospitals, Indiana Veterans Home, and the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy. Visitors and staff should follow the CDC guidance for fully vaccinated and unvaccinated people regarding mask wearing and other protective measures.

Indiana Recycling Infrastructure and Economic Impact Study

IDEM’s Office of Program Support (OPS) has released the Indiana Recycling Infrastructure and Economic Impact Study . The Study was commissioned by the Recycling Market Development Board (RMDB) and prepared by GT Environmental. It provides a comprehensive review and analysis of Indiana’s recycling infrastructure and the significant economic impact of recycling the state. The Study also includes specific recommendations to improve statewide recycling to maximize its impact in the circular economy.

The Study demonstrates that Indiana’s waste and recycling infrastructure for municipal solid waste collected approximately 8.8 million tons in 2019, of which 19% was diverted from landfills through recycling and composting. The Study details that although only 19% of MSW currently generated (the state has a goal of 50%), the impact in total jobs in the recycling industry, the economic impact, and the tax impacts are significant.

Indiana’s State Regulated Wetland Law

On July 1, 2021, amendments to Indiana’s State Regulated Wetland Law became effective. The changes are the result of SEA 389 (Public Law 160) which greatly reduced the number of non-federal wetlands regulated by the state. It is important to note the law did not eliminate protections of state wetlands; regulations governing wetlands remain at both the state and federal level.  In order to confirm that a wetland is not regulated, a person seeking to impact the wetland must take certain steps.

Blue-Green Algae Sampling

Sampling of the DNR’s swimming beaches began May 17 for the 2021 recreation season to prepare for DNR’s opening of these areas on Memorial Day weekend, and will end the week of August 30th in advance of Labor Day weekend. IDEM samples for blue-green algae and analyzes those samples for the type and quantity of blue-green algae present and for the following toxins which may be produced by certain types of blue-green algae: microcystin, cylindrospermopsin (only done if species that produce it are present), anatoxin-a, and saxitoxin. More information is provided on the Blue-Green Algae site.

The Recycling Market Development Program Grant Funding Announced

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management Office of Program Support on behalf of the Recycling Market Development Board (RMDB) is now accepting 2021 proposals. The deadline for submissions is June 23, 2021, at 5:00 PM.

Public/private businesses, local government, schools, and non-profit organizations may seek a grant starting at $50,000 and up to $500,000 with a 50 percent cash match. Projects should focus on increasing collection or consumption, as well as economic development, education, and outreach efforts related to recycling.

The Recycling Market Development Program page offers detailed proposal requirements and can assist with questions about the application process.

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