Zionsville Mayor Emily Styron’s administration has released the first Zionsville Climate Action Plan, a plan that takes on ambitious community-wide efforts to start mitigating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The goal is to keep emissions stable while the population continues to grow.

The Town of Zionsville passed resolutions formally adopting the plan. On Feb. 10, the Zionsville Parks Board unanimously passed a resolution and on Feb. 16, the Zionsville Town Council unanimously passed a resolution.

Key components of the Climate Action Plan include an inventory of GHG emissions in Zionsville and their sources, GHG reduction goals and strategic measures to reduce community-wide GHG emissions.

By implementing the plan, town officials hope the community can greatly reduce its impact on the environment while working alongside other Midwestern communities.

“The town is taking steps to do our part to reduce local GHG emissions and promote sustainability,” Styron said. “We need every household and business to support these strategies and goals – opt into the curbside compost service, ride your bike to school and work, find out if solar energy can work for you, volunteer to serve on a town committee, advocate for more green areas and pathways.”

Last spring, the Town of Zionsville conducted a GHG inventory. Once the town established the quantity of emissions and where they were coming from, Zionsville’s projected population growth was used to estimate how the town’s cumulative emissions will change without any intervention.

The town used that information to work with the public and other stakeholders to pinpoint what the community could do to strategically reduce GHG emissions in Zionsville. The results of those efforts produced the Climate Action Plan.

Within the plan, the town’s GHG reduction initiatives are organized into four categories: Energy, Transportation, Solid Waste and Sustainability & Resilience.

Every three years, the town will provide updates on the plan’s progress, incorporate new sustainability and GHG reduction strategies and update older strategies as needed.

As part of the Climate Action Plan, the Town has partnered with Earth Mama Compost, a local woman-owned business providing fee-based curbside compost to residents. If 300 households participate and compost just 25% of their solid waste weekly, 86 tons of waste can be diverted from landfills annually. Zionsville residents can sign up for this service for $10 per month, a discount of 50%. Sign-up is available through the Earth Mama website.

The town was also selected to join the Environmental Resilience Institute’s 2021 cohort and to host an Indiana Sustainability Development Program Climate Fellow, an undergraduate or graduate student who will intern with the Town of Zionsville in the summer of 2021.
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