recycling bin

The Coca-Cola Foundation and Keeping America Beautiful (KAB) have been working together for eight years on the Recycling Bin Grant Program, which provides recycling bins for public spaces. In April 2013, the partners announced that a $300,000 grant from The Coca-Cola Foundation will enable 41 colleges and 114 communities to receive a collective 5,000 to 5,200 recycling bins. Over 70 percent of the bins are designed specifically for permanent, ongoing use in heavily-trafficked public spaces and events, with the remaining 30 percent to be used by students in college residence halls.

“One of the main barriers to recycling is convenience. Providing a recycling bin helps communities overcome that barrier,” said Matthew M. McKenna, president and CEO, Keep America Beautiful. “We are truly grateful for Coca-Cola’s support and commitment to recycling, and for its support and commitment of the Bin Grant Program.”

recycling bins

While some grant recipients are seeking to expand established recycling programs, others such as Muskegon Community College in western Michigan will use the 40 indoor recycling bins it received to make recycling available for the first time in its student union and many of its academic buildings, while the City of Dayton, Ohio, chose a different style of bin for use at its community athletic fields where large numbers of beverage containers are generated.

Groups interested in receiving a bin must apply and recipients are selected based on criteria including level of need, recycling experience and the ability of applicants to sustain their program in the future. Since 2007, the Bin Grant Program has placed more than 29,000 recycling bins in over 300 communities in 48 states and the District of Columbia. 

“Through our support of the Bin Grant program and our long-standing partnership with Keep America Beautiful, we are helping to bring sustainability to life in local communities across the country,” said Lori George Billingsley, Vice President, Community Relations, Coca-Cola North America Group. “By increasing access to recycling today, we build sustainable communities for the future.”

Carts for Chicago

For Earth Day 2013, The Coca-Cola Foundation, the philanthropic arm of The Coca-Cola Company, announced a one-time grant to Keep America Beautiful to support Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to bring curbside recycling to all 50 wards in Chicago to increase city-wide recycling. Through this grant and a match from The Coca-Cola Company, more than 50,000 recycling carts will be rolled out across Chicago as part of the city’s goal to give more than 600,000 Chicago households a convenient means to recycle.

Recycling cart

In a release, Mayor Emanuel says, “Chicago residents have been asking for citywide recycling services for many years, and this grant will help expand blue cart recycling to all communities by the end of 2013 and pay for damaged and replacement carts for years to come. With the help of Coca-Cola and Keep America Beautiful, Chicago will become a greener, more sustainable city.”

"Our actions supporting Chicago's sustainability reflect our belief that when we all work together, real progress happens," said Steve Cahillane, president & CEO of Coca-Cola Americas. "By bringing business, government and community organizations, like Keep Chicago Beautiful, together, we can help create long-term solutions — here in Chicago and across the globe."

The city began delivering branded carts to residents in March, with 327,000 households initially receiving the blue cart recycling service, which is a single-stream, bi-weekly collection to residents who live in single-family homes, and two-, three- and four-flat buildings. The expansion will include 340,000 households and is scheduled to be complete by the fall of 2013.

Recycling initiatives with KAB contribute to Coca-Cola’s 2020 recovery goal to reach a 75% recovery rate of bottles and cans in developed markets.

Keep America Beautiful is not just for the United States. In fact, there are ongoing recovery programs throughout the South Pacific. Read and click on the links below to learn more:

In 2012, we contributed $150,000 to support beverage container recycling programs by Keep New Zealand Beautiful and $170,000 to public recycling efforts by Keep Australia Beautiful, bringing our total contributions to Australia’s program to more than $500,000 since 2009.