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Idle Free Louisville Campaign Honored by EPA

Wednesday April 2, 2014

One of two clean-air outreach programs cited nationwide

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has honored Idle Free Louisville with a 2014 Clean Air Excellence Award.

The national awards program honors individuals and organizations that have undertaken the risks of innovation, served as pioneers in their fields, and have improved air quality.

Idle Free Louisville was developed in 2010 to combat rising summertime ozone levels in Metro Louisville, an area that has long struggled with air pollution. Idle Free Louisville is overseen by Kentuckiana Air Education, the education and outreach unit of the Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District.

Idle Free Louisville targets unnecessary vehicle idling, which exacerbates air pollution, wastes fuel, and negatively affects people who are in places where excessive idling occurs, such as school pick-up lines and neighborhood streets.

The campaign’s cornerstone is Idle Free School/Idle Free Business, which enlists parents, teachers, students, employees, and business operators to adopt Idle Free principles. Schools, for example, discourage parents from idling while picking up their children. Businesses post signs asking customers and delivery drivers to shut off their vehicles. So far, more than 40 local schools, businesses, and organizations have made the commitment to be Idle Free. More information is available at www.helptheair.org/idle-free

A representative of Kentuckiana Air Education is in Washington, D.C., today to receive the award. The other recipient in the 2014 education/outreach category is Tribal Healthy Homes Northwest, a coalition of American Indian and Alaska Natives from Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska.