12 Communities Receive $10,000 “Recycle On The Go” Grants
Greenwich, Conn. (May 20, 2009) – With the unofficial start of summer just around the corner, consumers increasingly reach for packaged beverages to keep them hydrated while on-the-go. In communities across the country, however, recycling solutions for these packaged items are often inadequate and inconvenient, and according to the National Association for PET Container Resources, less than 24% of plastic beverage bottles were recycled in 2007.
To encourage and empower local communities to make away-from-home recycling more convenient, Nestlé Waters North America today announced it has teamed up with Keep America Beautiful to provide $10,000 “Recycle On The Go” grants to 12 Keep America Beautiful affiliates.
Keep America Beautiful (KAB) is the nation's largest volunteer-based community action and education organization focused on litter prevention, waste reduction and beautification. Through public-private partnerships, KAB aims to engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community's environment.
More than 55 affiliates applied for the grants, which required the organizations to propose creative, comprehensive and sustainable concepts for public venue recycling of plastic beverage bottles. Each project will tackle public space recycling in an innovative way, from focusing on education, to infrastructure, to grassroots volunteer efforts.
“These ‘Recycle On The Go’ grants are a step toward improving our country’s recycling rates and our environment,” said Kim Jeffery, president and CEO of Nestlé Waters North America, which has committed to working with others to more than double current plastic beverage bottle recycling rates to 60% by 2018. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Americans recycled 82 million tons of municipal solid waste in 2006, reducing carbon emissions by the equivalent of removing more than 39 million cars from the road.
“One community at a time, one container at a time, we will work with great organizations like Keep America Beautiful to make recycling easier for people,” Jeffery added.
“Perhaps the greatest benefit of ‘Recycle On The Go’ grants, and any away-from-home recycling, is that it provides a strong and highly-visible reminder of the importance of recycling,” said Matthew McKenna, president and CEO of KAB. “Communities that support robust public space recycling are reinforcing their overall recycling awareness efforts and increasing their recycling rates from all sources.”
Winning affiliates and concepts include:
- Keep Blackstone Valley Beautiful (Rhode Island): Currently, there is no recycling at the area’s two major sporting complexes for football, soccer, track and other community programs. With the “Recycle On The Go” grant, this local affiliate will purchase 20 recycling bins, create bilingual signage, and work with area community groups to educate about recycling. In addition, the affiliate will collaborate with the Central Falls Public Works Department to measure collected items, helping the organization to track progress against its goal of a 35% recycling rate.
- Keep Council Bluffs Beautiful (Iowa): The “Recycle On The Go” grant will allow the Council Bluffs affiliate to introduce recycling to the Council Bluffs Recreation Complex, an 8,000 seat arena and convention center used for sports games, concerts, trade shows, banquets and other events, and visited by more than 300,000 people each year. For the first time, recycling containers will be placed next to every trash bin in the facility.
- Keep Santa Fe Beautiful (New Mexico): This affiliate will use the “Recycle On The Go” grant to purchase recycling bins for all ten public parks in Santa Fe, which are used for sporting events, festivals and recreation. The grant will also supplement the agency’s ongoing community recycling education efforts, which include speaking engagements at area schools and community posters and e-flyers.
Information on these affiliates and the other nine grant recipients is available at http://kab.org/recycleonthego.
About Nestlé Waters North America
Central to the leadership of Nestlé Waters North America Inc. is its 32-year experience and single-focus on producing bottled water products. The company’s dedication to product quality, manufacturing expertise, low-cost production, employee development and environmental stewardship, especially in the areas of water use, energy and packaging, has helped Nestlé Waters become the number one bottled water company in the U.S. To reach success, the company follows its credo: Respect for each other, respect for the environment, and respect for the community. To learn more, visit http://www.Nestle-WatersNA.com.
About Keep America Beautiful, Inc.
Keep America Beautiful, Inc., established in 1953, is the nation's largest volunteer-based community action and education organization. With a network of nearly 1,000 affiliate and participating organizations, Keep America Beautiful forms public-private partnerships and programs that engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community's environment. To learn more, visit www.kab.org.