Girl volunteering in a recreation program outside at the park


    Lend a hand in our parks. Volunteer Opportunities


    According to the Environmental Protection Agency, sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment. To pursue sustainability is to create and maintain the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony to support present and future generations..

    How CCPR is Staying Green

    As a two-time NRPA Gold Medal of Excellence winner, Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation is committed to continually improving its sustainability practices and promoting park stewardship. According to the CAPRA Environmental Sustainability Policy and Program Standard: “The agency shall have an established policy on environmental sustainability that states the agency position on energy and resource conservation. The policy should address sustainable product purchasing; reduction and handling of waste; wise use and protection of 51 land, air, water and wildlife; and sustainable design/construction of buildings and facilities.”

    Here is a snapshot of some of our green efforts:

    Green Employee Highlight

    Aimee uses refillable water bottle and reusable bags as part of her own sustainability efforts.

    “About 4 years ago, I stopped buying plastic bottles and now use only re-fillable water bottles and bring my own re-usable bags to the grocery store. More recently, I have eliminated all zip-loc baggies and now use re-usable zip-loc bags.”


    Aimee Rich, ESE/SCS Inclusion & Engagement Supervisor


    Upcoming Green Initiatives

    Monon Cleanup Challenge
    April 18 | Monon Greenway Central Trailhead | 3:30-5:30 p.m.



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    Weed Wrangle at the Well
    April 19 | 10 a.m.-12 p.m. | Flowing Well Park



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    Earth Day Planting
    April 21 | 4-6 p.m. | West Park



    Lend a Hand

    Join Carmel Clay Parks & Recreation in creating an accessible system of vibrant and sustainable parks, diverse recreational facilities, and engaging programs that contribute to healthy lifestyles, a tight-knit community, a thriving economy, and a high quality of life in the City of Carmel and Clay Township.

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    Reduce + Reuse + Repurpose

    The concepts of reducing, reusing, and repurposing are more relevant today than ever before. The United States has the third-largest population of all countries, but it produces the most municipal solid waste in the world: 258 million tons of MSW was generated in 2017 alone (Sebastian, 2020).

    Despite many efforts of the National Recycling Coalition and Keep America Beautiful, the national rate of recycling in America has languished at about 34%. Even this modest success rate came crashing down in February 2018 when the Chinese government, in response to growing waste contamination and effects of pollution, issued a declaration that China would no longer accept 24 classes of imported waste. It led to escalating prices for recycling and incineration and many towns across America ended curbside pickup for recycling altogether (Dolesh, 2019).

    As a result, the need is clear. To be a more sustainable community we need to direct greater focus on reducing and reusing, thus lessening the burden placed on the recycling facilities. There are many books, podcasts, and social media channels dedicated to educating people on reducing their consumption and reusing things they already own.

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    Trash + Recycling in Carmel

    • Bring a trash bag when hiking or walking in the parks – pick up any trash you find and take it to the nearest trash can.
    • Always rinse and dry your recyclable items before placing them in the recycle bin.
    • Do not bag your recyclables and do not place plastic bags into recycling – these items jam the sorting machines at recycling facilities costing them time and money.

    Prevent Food Waste + Composting

    According to the Indiana Recycling Coalition, food waste comprises roughly 22% of all landfill volume, making it the single largest category of Municipal Solid Waste in America. It is also responsible for almost 40% of methane emissions from landfills. Minimizing food waste can create significant positive impacts on the health of our environment. But where do we start? Here are a few ideas.

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    Report a Polluter in Hamilton County

    It is up to all of us to be the eyes and ears for the natural resources around us. It’s important to be an advocate and if you see something that just doesn’t seem right, report it. If you are in Hamilton County, you can report a polluter here: