Recycle Across America prepares to turn up the volume

Recycling bin labeling announcements scheduled for additional 2015 airings.

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August 19, 2015

Televised public service announcements created by Recycle Across America (RAA) have been scheduled for increased airplay in August 2015, according to the not-for-profit organization that describes itself as “dedicated to simplifying the act of recycling for the general public to help them recycle more and help them recycle right.”

A mid-August article posted by USA Today says RAA is “launching its first national TV campaign this month to promote the organization’s recycling labels.”

The labels are designed to offer guidance to residential recycling program participants as to what belongs in their bins and what should stay out. The labels can also be used on recycling bins placed in public areas such as parks, shopping centers and entertainment venues.

The 30- and 60-second TV spots feature actors including Mark Ruffalo (Bruce Banner and The Incredible Hulk from the “Avengers” movies) and Kristen Bell (title character in the "Veronica Mars" TV series).

The recycling bin labels created by RAA are designed to address a wide-scale problem facing recyclers and consumers of secondary commodities: the placement of inappropriate items into recycling bins.

In a mid-July 2015 blog post that provides an update on RAA activities, the group’s founder and Executive Director Mitch Hedlund says the “standardized labels [offered by RAA] went through a year-long vetting process nationally and globally.”

RAA’s labels, writes Hedlund “continue to be adopted by some of the most notable brands in the world, and the standardized labels are proving to increase recycling levels 50 to 100 percent and significantly decrease contamination levels.”

Hedlund continues, “Additionally, in an independent focus group with 1,000 U.S. consumers, the standardized labels won in every category: appeal, comprehensiveness, ease [and] effectiveness and thereby helped people recycle right and recycle more than any other labels.”

Standardization is a powerful force, writes Hedlund in her blog post, pointing to the 19th-century creation of time zones, standardized traffic signs the FDA food labeling system as examples of standardization that have been societally accepted and have proven effective.

A video posted by RAA to YouTube provides context on standardized recycling labels, while Hedlund says a PBS clip provides a compelling review of how standardized time changed the world.