Today is Crush A Can Day 2012; yes, such a day exists. The aluminum can recycling rate in the United States is on the rise but as a nation, we still have a long way to go. According to The Aluminum Association, the aluminum beverage container recycling rate in 2011 jumped to 65.1 percent, up 7 percent from the year prior. However, that means that one-third of the aluminum cans used in the United States are not recycled.


Alcoa and the Alcoa Foundation are working to improve aluminum recycling through a $2 million Clinton Global Initiative commitment. The “Action to Accelerate Recycling” will focus on aluminum as well as plastic, glass and paper recycling education efforts.


Through the initiative, Alcoa estimates that 90 tons of recycled content will be diverted from local landfills. If this diversion level is achieved, it would result in the avoidance of 850 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.


In addition to the “Action to Accelerate Recycling” initiative, Alcoa announced a new Pass the Can Facebook app, which includes a charitable donation. Through these efforts, the aluminum can recycling rate in the nation should be on track to reach a 75 percent recycling rate by 2015.


In honor of Crush A Can Day, help spread the word about the importance of aluminum can recycling, share the Pass the Can app and even head out and collect aluminum cans in your neighborhood. If you decide to collect cans in your community, I encourage you to pledge the financial proceeds from the recycling process to a local charity.

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