The city of Laurel, Maryland, will receive a grant through The Recycling Partnership and American Beverage Association to expand its recycling program as part of the Every Bottle Back initiative, a beverage industry-led effort to reduce the industry’s plastic footprint and keep bottles out of nature.
The $112,465 investment from The Recycling Partnership, Falls Church, Virginia, and the American Beverage Association, Washington, will help provide Laurel residents with 7,150 65-gallon lidded curbside recycling carts for free, which are expected to help increase collection rates. The investment includes funding for direct-to-resident outreach and education on what is and isn’t recyclable, helping to cut down on contamination in the recycling stream, the funding organizations say.
The investment is estimated to yield 7.32 million new pounds of recyclables over 10 years, of which 285,480 pounds will be polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and 109,800 pounds will be aluminum, the funders say.
Katherine Lugar, president and chief executive officer of the American Beverage Association, says, “We’re helping to modernize the city’s recycling program, improve recycling rates and ensure more of our valuable bottles are collected and ultimately remade into new bottles—reducing our use of new plastic.”
Launched in 2019 by the association, the Every Bottle Back initiative is a partnership featuring The Coca-Cola Co., Keurig Dr Pepper and PepsiCo that aims to improve the collection of plastic beverage bottles.
“Maryland’s beverage bottlers and distributors share the goal of ensuring valuable recyclable materials, like our carefully designed 100-percent-recyclable bottles, are collected so they can be remade into new products, as intended,” says Ellen Valentino, executive vice president of the Maryland-Delaware-Washington Beverage Association.
Cody Marshall, chief of community strategy at The Recycling Partnership, adds, “We are grateful to American Beverage’s Every Bottle Back initiative for their support of this recycling transformation that will keep valuable recyclables out of our environment and waterways and put them back into the circular economy to provide much-needed supply for local producers.”
The investment in Laurel is the 12th of 22 projects that the beverage industry has committed to fund under Every Bottle Back. These investments total $14.3 million in committed funding and will yield an estimated 698 million more pounds of recycled PET over 10 years, according to the American Beverage Association and The Recycling Partnership.