Zero Beverage Container Waste?
Cutting Beverage Container Waste,
A to Z:
Spread the word about container recycling and reuse. In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, when the nation was in the grip of a “landfill crisis,” a great deal of state, local, corporate, and non-profit money was spent to implement and publicize new recycling programs, and to raise the public’s consciousness about recycling in general. This outpouring has slowed to a trickle, however, in light of agency budget shortfalls and dwindling public and media interest.
It is important for everyone who cares about reducing beverage container waste to urge entities who can conduct formal recycling education to do so. States, cities, garbage companies, and many others need to put more money into social marketing so that the recycling message does not die. Recycling should also continue to be worked into school curricula wherever possible.
Informal education —or “viral marketing”—is also important. Talk to your friends and neighbors about recycling; talk to your co-workers and building management about office recycling; talk to the School Board about recycling in your child’s school district.
Selected Educational Links:
- U.S. EPA:“Waste and Recycling Curriculum Resources”
- OR DEQ: “Rethinking Recycling: An Oregon Waste Reduction Curriculum”
- California Integrated Solid Waste Management Board: Recycling Curricula
- "Recycle Rex:" The educational spokesdinosaur for California DOC
- New York State DEC’s “Green Schools” resources
- Lesson plans from Texas A&M
- "Mrs. Inahurry and the Amazing Trash Converter": a play about recycling for elementary-school students
Selected Social Marketing Links:
- Community-based social marketing resources (McKenzie-Mohr; requires registration)
- Hawaii Workshop: Fostering Sustainable Behavior
- Massachusetts consultant specializing in Recycling Social Marketing
- California and Ohio agree to share recycling social marketing tools