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Mission

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management’s (IDEM) mission is to implement federal and state regulations to protect human health and the environment while allowing the environmentally sound operations of industrial, agricultural, commercial, and governmental activities vital to a prosperous economy.

Functions

IDEM issues air, water, and solid and hazardous waste permits that restrict discharges to environmentally safe levels. Staff members inspect and monitor regulated entities; provide compliance and technical assistance; monitor and assess air, land, and water quality; use enforcement actions as necessary to ensure compliance; and respond to incidents involving spills to soil or waters of the state.

The IDEM 101 [PDF] presentation details the agency’s functions; its offices’ roles, duties, and programs; and the agency’s staffing level, funding sources, and regional service areas. For an introduction to public participation and IDEM’s procedures for issuing environmental permits, overseeing cleanups, preparing environmental reports and plans, and writing environmental rules, please consult the Citizens’ Guide to IDEM.

History

The 1985 Indiana General Assembly created IDEM under Title 13 of the Indiana Code. This act reorganized the state environmental programs that the Indiana State Board of Health had previously implemented and enforced under the direction and authority of the Environmental Management Board, the Stream Pollution Control Board, and the Air Pollution Control Board. Since that time, the legislature reorganized and renamed the boards. Title 13 created divisions for air and water pollution control, solid waste management, pollution prevention, administrative services, and offices to handle environmental emergencies, public communication, and investigations. IDEM began operating on July 1, 1986.

IDEM’s organizational structure and leadership team include:

Contact information and office hours are provided on the Contact page.

IDEM Staff

IDEM employs highly qualified engineers, scientists, and environmental project managers who specialize in air, land, and water quality issues and pollution prevention. These professionals work in partnership with IDEM’s lawyers, investigators, and an administrative staff that includes communications, finance, information technology, and records management specialists. IDEM staff work diligently to provide high quality services across Indiana to fulfill the agency’s mission.

Efficiency Metrics

IDEM uses data and metrics to gauge how the agency is doing in environmental protection and customer service. The agency’s efficiency metrics illustrate key performance indicators, which include:

  • The percent of Hoosiers with air and water that meet air quality and safe drinking water standards
  • How quickly IDEM’s staff issues air, water, and land permits
  • The number of days IDEM inspectors take to issue an inspection report

Accountability

Under federal law, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) delegated authority to IDEM to administer certain federal environmental programs. Every two years, both agencies negotiate a Performance Partnership Agreement (PPA) that identifies not only IDEM’s priorities, but joint priorities with U.S. EPA and objectives between the two agencies. The PPA helps to direct federal resources toward the state’s most pressing environmental issues.

Quality Assurance

U.S. EPA has delegated Indiana authority to implement certain federal environmental laws and rules. IDEM is required to maintain a quality system that ensures data gathering is efficient and accurate, resulting in agency decisions that are as reliable and defensible as possible. The agency’s quality system is documented in a Quality Management Plan, approved by U.S. EPA Region 5 and revised every five years.

Please contact IDEM if you have questions or concerns about the agency or Indiana’s environment.

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