American Recycling Day Trash in bundlesAmerica Recycles Day, November 15, is a special day set aside in the United States to remind all of us how important the recycling of products made of materials like wood, metals and plastics is to the health of our planet. Fortunately, the youngsters in our society have taken the recycling message to heart and actively participate in recycling programs in school and in their communities.

Although we’ve made good progress in addressing the need to recycle, statistics show we still have a long way to go.

Here are some startling facts about what we consume and waste:
1. Each American generates over 4 pounds of trash every day.
2. That’s about 200 million tons of trash each year, enough to fill the Busch Sports Stadium twice a day from top to bottom.
3. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) estimates that 75% of our trash is recyclable, but we only recycle 30% of it.
4. We generate about 21.5 million tons of food waste each year. Composting would reduce greenhouse gas equal to what 2 million automobiles produce.
5. Nearly 95 bullion aluminum drink cans are manufactured in the U.S. each year.
The good news is, 65% are recycled. That equates to 123,000 each minute. The recycled aluminum is made into new cans which are back in the stores within 90 days.

What Goes On?

The November 12 issue of RecyclingToday.com is devoted to programs communities and schools can actively participate in America Recycles Day. These programs are not only designed to encourage people to recycle on that day but to make recycling part of our everyday lives.

Keep America Beautiful (KAB), an organization out of Stamford, Connecticut, announced that thousands of creative recycling events are being planned for weeks leading up to November 15.

Many companies like Amcor, Johnson & Johnson, Northrop Grumman and Pilot Pen assist the ARD program in big ways. For instance, Johnson & Johnson, in support of this year’s ARD theme “Bathrooms, Bags & Gadgets,” is giving 10,000 bathroom recycling bags to remind us that there are many bathroom items that can be recycled.

This year, ARD is encouraging individuals to take the “I Will Recycle” Pledge that runs through Nov. 20. By posting a photo on of themselves holding a recyclable product on Tweeter or Instagram, the entrants will be eligible to win a refurbished, recycled Apple iPad.

Activities in Washington DC

In an attempt to get our Federal Government more involved in recycling efforts, KAB will co-host a congressional briefing about America Recycles Day on Wednesday, November 18 in Washington D.C. The speakers will brief members of Congress on the many benefits of recycling and how important it is to encourage all citizens to participate.

According to RecyclingToday.com, the KAB organization is the driving force behind America Recycling Day. Its stated purpose is to promote the end of littering in America and encourage recycling in order to beautify our communities. Over 600 affiliate groups and millions of citizen volunteers supported by municipalities, elected officials and corporate members are striving to do just that: keeping America beautiful.