Coca-Cola Foundation, The Recycling Partnership team to decrease waste in Atlanta
© Ekaterina Novikova -

Coca-Cola Foundation, The Recycling Partnership team to decrease waste in Atlanta

The two companies partnered for a three-year, $4 million program that will build on the success of a pilot program that increased recycling collection by 57 percent.

The Recycling Partnership, Falls Church, Virginia, with the support from The Coca-Cola Foundation is launching a three-year $4 million program that will improve access to recycling and increase the capture of more quality recyclable items in the city of Atlanta. 

“Given the growing problem of packaging waste, it’s critical that Atlanta design a more efficient recycling system to keep as many of those materials as we can out of the landfill and back in the recycling stream,” says Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. “I hope this new partnership and program will allow our city to stake out a leadership position on recycling that can serve as inspiration and a model for other communities throughout the country that are looking to address similar challenges and drive long-term recycling system change.”

The anchor of the new citywide recycling program is The Recycling Partnership’s “Feet on the Street” cart tagging education campaign, which was piloted in select areas within the city of Atlanta in 2017.

“Every home has the power to keep 800 pounds of recyclables out of the landfill every year,” says Cody Marshall, chief community strategy officer of The Recycling Partnership. “By educating Atlanta residents at the cart with easy-to-understand ‘what and what not to’ recycle tags, we are driving positive behavior change to help the City of Atlanta capture more quality recyclables. These quality recyclables are then put back into the recycling system stream, creating a healthier economy, a less wasteful planet and stronger communities.”

“We saw a 57 percent decrease in overall contamination and 27 percent increase in overall capture of quality recyclables in 2017 with the Partnership model,” says Kanika Greenlee, executive director of Keep Atlanta Beautiful Commission. “City of Atlanta residents want to recycle and to recycle correctly. We will drive powerful recycling change throughout our entire city with this innovative model.”

In addition to focusing on single-family home recycling in Atlanta, The Recycling Partnership also will launch new programs targeted at improving recycling access and education at multifamily housing locations and campuses of local colleges and universities throughout the city.