About the Center for Sustainable Living

Inspired and passionate people collaborate at the Center for Sustainable Living of Bloomington, Indiana to share how we can care for our Earth and live well, together. Our non-profit has more than 20 years of experience nurturing great ideas like yours, so find your place and do great work with us.

The Center for Sustainable Living is a nonprofit organization that has facilitated and led the development of over 15 ongoing community-based, self-organized, and sustainability-oriented Projects. Over the more than two decades since its founding, CSL has not only stewarded these Projects but has also committed to improving long-term environmental impacts.

CSL has grown alongside a variety of communities within Bloomington by promoting and facilitating access to healthy food for all people, sharing skills and knowledge through public fairs, and promoting the development of a local solidarity economy.

In an effort to demonstrate the risks of a culture of waste and disposable everything, including fashion, CSL has put on the Trashion/Refashion Runway Show for 8 consecutive years to great acclaim. It is also thanks to CSL that Bloomington was designated a Wildlife Habitat City, after CSL members organized the Backyard Wildlife Habitat Stewards class and increased wildlife habitat spaces.

The Center for Sustainable Living has had an exciting 20-plus years already, and we’re looking forward to what the next 20 years has in store for all of us. Without the hard work of legions of volunteers, Bloomington and the surrounding area would be a much less beautiful place. Do join us so we can work to make it truly sustainable in a way it surely is not now. Together, we know that we can shape our futures and be an inspiration for communities around the world.

The Center for Sustainable Living supports 10 different projects.
Find your passion and jump in!


Hosting potlucks and encouraging advocacy for sustainable eating with other vegetarians and vegans in your community.

About the Project

BloomingVeg is an all-ages social and advocacy group for vegetarians, vegans, and veggie-lovers alike. BloomingVeg was founded in 2012 to help at the local animal sanctuary, promote and publicize vegan dining options in Bloomington, demonstrate against animal cruelty at circuses, and engage in similar friendly efforts to help others live more compassionately.

Also, because eating is such a social aspect of our lives, we wanted to provide a venue for fun gatherings like potlucks, holiday cookie swaps, Meatless Monday dinners at local restaurants, and more among like-minded people! If you are a long-time vegan or vegetarian, just starting out, or maybe you just like eating vegan food, BloomingVeg has something for you! You’re welcome in our friendly group of compassionate eaters.

Recent Posts

BloomingVeg Stocks the Little Free Pantries

Have you heard of a “Little Free Pantry” (LFP)? Little Free Pantry Bloomington, fellow project of the Center For Sustainable Living, has a variety of small pantries around town, similar…

Vegan Cook-Along | Potato Zucchini Fritters

Jordan from Bloomingfoods shows us how to make seasonal potato zucchini fritters with a rainbow chard slaw. If you make this recipe, post a picture on Instagram and tag @bloomingveg…

Try Vegan this January At Local Bloomington Restaurants

Try vegan this January with vegan specials at participating local Bloomington restaurants.


Bring Your Bag Bloomington

Encouraging everyone we come across to use reusable shopping bags.

About the Project

We spend time talking one-on-one to people in grocery stores and at various community events, explaining the problems with plastic bags, and distributing free reusable bags. Person by person we are showing how small individual changes can lead to measurable, community-wide improvements! If you’d like to help make simple changes that have huge impacts, then join our efforts to teach and inform.

The original goal of Bring Your Bag Bloomington was to introduce a city ordinance to drastically reduce distribution of single-use plastic bags by implementing a ban and/or fee on bags. After working towards this goal for 18 months, the Indiana Legislature rushed through a bill in March 2016 which banned any local laws controlling plastic bags or any other disposable food containers. This was outrageous, but nevertheless we have continued to encourage everyone we come across to use reusable bags.

Habitat Stewards

Establishing wildlife habitats, increasing biodiversity, and beautifying the land anywhere there is a bit of space.

About the Project

Through Habitat Stewards, we take the national Backyard Wildlife Habitat principles and share with others the joy and benefits of growing local native plants, establishing wildlife water and shelter needs, and more. We started by working to certify Bloomington as a Community Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. Today, we still encourage new wildlife habitat developments throughout Bloomington and share what we have learned about our local ecosystem. You can help create wildlife habitats in backyards around our community!


Bringing solar to more places to expand the number of businesses and public buildings powered by the sun.

About the Project

The Solar Indiana Renewable Energy Network (SIREN) formed in 2008 to promote an alternative energy model to reduce dependence on coal. Since then, we have continued to help more and more homes, businesses, churches, governmental buildings, and schools become solar powered. By presenting free, public Going Solar programs, and organizing Solarize group-purchase programs in partnership with city teams around the state, we help overcome barriers to adoption of solar in the Midwest by demonstrating its performance, affordability, and availability. If you want to see our culture move away from fossil fuels as a foundation, embracing the possibility of carbon-neutral energy, then join our efforts right here in southern Indiana.

Solar For All

Purchasing solar power together to expand access to those with limited funds, providing energy independence and economic savings for all.

About the Project

By quickly ramping up photovoltaic (PV) installations in Indiana, we are making solar power financially accessible to those with limited funds through our bulk purchasing and collective subsidizing plan. Together we are increasing energy efficiency, building community, and creating resilience.

The price of solar installations has dropped dramatically in recent years, yet people with fixed or limited income still cannot afford to buy in, and typically do not qualify for the federal renewable energy tax credit. These people are also the most vulnerable to inevitable electric rate increases and have the most to gain from reduced utilities expenses. All households, businesses, and other organizations are eligible to participate and benefit from the bulk purchase discounts we negotiate in a given area, and by buying with us subsidize installations of solar PV systems for people with fixed or limited incomes—providing some energy independence and economic savings for all. Not only do people of all economic positions benefit from our purchasing plan, but along the way volunteers gain skills in home weatherization, solar installation, and roof repair. If you want to learn these skills for possible new employment opportunities and help spread solar access, this is the project for you!

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