The Recycling Partnership, Falls Church, Virginia, and the companies that support it will extend $520,000 to the city of Kenosha, Wisconsin, to help provide 96-gallon recycling collection carts for some 32,000 households.
The consortium says Kenosha has been “selected for investment under Every Bottle Back, a breakthrough initiative to improve the collection and recycling of plastic bottles.”
The $520,000 will help more than 32,000 households convert from a plastic bag recycling system to 96-gallon, curbside recycling carts. “This modernization will support the automation of recycling collection so that carts will be lifted and dumped into trucks via an automated arm, upgrading from the city’s current labor-intensive, manual collection of bags,” states the partnership.
Currently, Kenosha’s recyclable materials are sent to a material recovery facility (MRF) that does not accept bagged recyclables, resulting in unnecessary landfilling of scrap materials including plastic bottles. Over the next 10 years, the change to the Kenosha program could yield 27,000 tons of new recyclables, including 1,050 tons of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles.
Launched in October 2019 by the American Beverage Association (ABA), Every Bottle Back is an initiative to reduce the beverage industry’s plastic footprint. Companies involved include Coca-Cola, Keurig Dr Pepper and PepsiCo, while nonprofit groups involved include the World Wildlife Fund, Closed Loop Partners and The Recycling Partnership.
“America’s leading beverage companies launched Every Bottle Back last year to reduce our plastic footprint, marshaling the equivalent of nearly a half-billion dollars to educate consumers nationwide and improve our recycling system with modern technology and infrastructure,” says Katherine Lugar, ABA president and CEO.
Keefe Harrison, CEO of The Recycling Partnership, “The Recycling Partnership is excited to partner with ABA and the city of Kenosha to move residents from placing their recycling in bags to large, lidded carts in order to collect even more valuable recyclables. When we know what we can and can’t recycle, we keep recyclables out of landfills and waterways, decrease greenhouse gases, support local jobs and reduce the need to create more products out of virgin materials.”
Adds Kelly McDowell of the Wisconsin Beverage Association, “This investment will preserve our environment and ensure the Kenosha Area remains a top, year-round destination by ensuring that valuable and recyclable materials, like our plastic beverage bottles, don’t end up as litter on the shoreline or as waste in landfills.”