Keep America Beautiful, the nation’s leading nonprofit that brings people together to build and sustain vibrant communities, is challenging corporate America and government to sign up for its Recycling at Work pledge. The pledge requires businesses, governments and institutional entities – such as school and hospitals – to commit to a 10 percent increase in the recycling of paper products, beverage containers, electronics and batteries in the workplace through a variety of actions by 2015. It also encourages the recycling of food waste and other biodegradables.
This Thursday, Nov. 15, marks America Recycles Day (ARD), which is a Keep America Beautiful (KAB) initiative and the only national platform for community-driven recycling awareness, education and collection events. From electronics collection events to plastic bag and campaign sign recycling, thousands of events are taking place throughout the country in recognition of ARD.
“The environmental impact from recycling remains critically important as a measure of sustainable economies and vibrant communities,” said Matt McKenna, KAB president and chief executive officer. “To increase our national municipal recycling rate from its current 34 percent level, the increase will come less from national initiatives and more from locally-driven efforts. Engaging individuals to take the action to recycle at home, at work and at play is the linchpin to increasing recycling rates.”
The Recycling at Work pledge requires these entities to take the pledge on AmericaRecyclesDay.org, and report on actions taken to increase recycling and the results of those actions. KAB will compile the data and issue a comprehensive report in 2015, fulfilling its commitment made in partnership with Alcoa (NYS:AA) and the Alcoa Foundation at the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting in New York City.
Recycling at Work’s 2015 goal will be achieved through a series of approaches that include:
- Increasing employee awareness of the availability of recyclable services and benefits of recycling in offices and other facilities;
- Enhancing infrastructure and communications to enable greater recycling and diversion of the materials in offices and other facilities;
- Identifying cost-effective opportunities to incorporate consideration of end-of-life recyclability and increased recycled content into the products purchased;
- Reporting on progress each year through the Recycling at Work online system; and,
- Inviting other organizations to take the Recycling at Work pledge.
“Recycling is participatory environmentalism,” McKenna said. “Poll after poll shows that individuals identify the act of recycling as their most immediate, tangible, and visible contribution to a better environment.”
Whether the consequence of the act of recycling is visible, such as the observable effect of less littering, almost all recyclers know that their actions are saving natural resources, reducing energy consumption, and sustaining our planet for future generations.
America’s leading companies are proud to make America Recycles Day possible. National sponsors include: American Chemistry Council, Anheuser-Busch, Earth911.com, Glad, Johnson & Johnson, Nestlé Waters North America, Owens-Illinois, PepsiCo and Waste Management.
About Keep America Beautiful, Inc.
Keep America Beautiful is the nation’s leading nonprofit that brings people together to build and sustain vibrant communities. With a network of more than 1,200 affiliate and participating organizations including state recycling organizations, we work with millions of volunteers to take action in their communities. Keep America Beautiful offers solutions that create clean, beautiful public places, reduce waste and increase recycling, generate positive impact on local economies and inspire generations of environmental stewards. Through our programs and public-private partnerships, we engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment. For more information, visit kab.org. To join America Recycles Day, visit americarecyclesday.org.