Re-post of an article from Packaging Digest
Recycling is not only good for the planet, but good for your wallet too. According to the Aluminum Assn, Americans earn nearly $1 billion a year from recycling aluminum cans, yet nearly another $1 billion worth of aluminum cans are still tossed into landfills. As national sponsors of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15, 2011, Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation are providing tools on its recycling website to make it easier for Americans to recycle.
The website is loaded with ideas on how to turn cans into treasure—from a free Aluminate iPhone app that helps users set and track financial recycling goals, to a turnkey toolkit that provides steps for planning a recycling campaign to raise money for charity.
"Increased recycling can also be a job creator," says Beth Schmitt, director of recycling programs for Alcoa. "According to the Container Recycling Institute, for every thousand tons of beverage containers recycled, between 1.5 and 7 jobs can be created by private industry. So recycling those energy-rich natural resources not only helps us become energy independent, but it also creates private sector jobs that we desperately need in this country."
While it's simple to recycle, it's not always easy. In some communities, consumers don't have access to recycling bins or know where to find recycling centers. That's why the website also includes a recycling center location search tool and a list of states offering recycling bins through Alcoa's Recycling Bin Donation Program.
"In 2008, Alcoa took up the charge to raise recycling rates in the U.S. to 75 percent by 2015, and we can only make it happen by getting everyone involved," says Paula Davis, president, Alcoa Foundation. "Our partnership with Keep America Beautiful's America Recycles Day is a perfect way to engage Americans, especially the next generation, in recycling."
To spread the word to students, for the first time ever, Alcoa is also sponsoring America Recycles Day recycling events at college football game tailgating parties in November. Participating schools receive a tailgating recycling starter kit that includes t-shirts, banners, buttons and 500 recycling bags.
To further capitalize on the enthusiasm of football fans, Alcoa Foundation also sponsors "Let's Tackle Recycling," a partnership at locations across the U.S. In Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, Alcoa Foundation partners with the Pennsylvania Resources Council. The program has increased the rate of recycling at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh and Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia by giving recycling bags to football fans as they enter parking lots.
Aluminum is infinitely recyclable. It takes 95 percent less energy to recycle it than to manufacture new metal from scratch-making aluminum one of the most sustainable metals.