When you walk by your kitchen’s trash can, do you ever hear a tiny voice crying “Please help me! I want to be recycled!”
Well, according to a new ad campaign introduced this week by Keep America Beautiful, you might want to pay attention. Your bottles, cans, cardboard, glass items and many other recyclable items are trying to communicate with you. They want to be recycled!
The “I Want to Be Recycled” campaign is designed to motivate Americans to recycle every day. Created pro bono by San Francisco-based ad agency Pereira & O’Dell, the campaign shows that recyclable materials can become something new if someone chooses to recycle. Think of it as reincarnation for household items.
(This makes me wonder whether these household items believe in karma, too. For instance, do the nicest plastic bottles come back as designer jeans and T-shirts? Or do the most sincere tin cans return as steel tubing in fancy bicycles?)
This campaign directs audiences to IWantToBeRecycled.org, a website with a localized search tool that allows users to find where to recycle in their local community. You also can contact Keep Liberty Beautiful or the Liberty County Solid Waste Department for local information as well by calling 610-3968 or 884-5304 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The website illustrates the recycling process through an interactive infographic and offers detailed information on what materials can be recycled, how they should be recycled and what products they can become in the future. If you are curious, check this site out.
Why recycle? The average American produces 4.4 pounds of trash a day and, on the whole, the United States produces more than 250 million tons of trash a year. However, only about 35 percent currently is recycled, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
According to research released by the Ad Council, only 52 percent of Americans say that they are “very” or “extremely” knowledgeable about how to properly recycle. Additionally, only 38 percent say they are “avid recyclers,” recycling as much as possible and willing to go out of their way to do so. While there are several barriers to recycling, among the most common reasons given for not recycling are that respondents did not have enough information about where to recycle or what types of materials they are able to recycle.
Some of the top reasons to recycle are:
• Recycling conserves natural resources, such as trees, water and minerals.
• Recycling prevents pollution caused by the extracting and processing of raw materials.
• Recycling reduces the need for more landfills and incinerators because when materials are recycled, less waste is sent for disposal.
• Recycling saves energy by eliminating the need to extract and process raw materials.
• Recycling helps to create new jobs for both the recycling industry and manufacturing.
So listen to those tiny voices trying to get your attention. Recycling is an easy way — one of the simplest ways ever — to make a long-term difference for our environment!