Buffalo, NY – Mayor Byron W. Brown today celebrated the 2019 America Recycles Day by unveiling his latest public awareness campaign, called Recycling Reinvented. Recycling Reinvented is a 6-month campaign that includes targeted messaging with the goal of reducing contamination in the City’s residential recycling totes. It focuses on four recycling areas: Plastic,
Food Waste, Yard Waste and Clothing Items. Each month, one of the four recycling areas will be targeted. Over a four-week period, residents will be exposed to ads, social media posts and signage about what does and does not belong in their recycling totes.
“The city of Buffalo is working at the cutting edge of recycling, using specialized technology and smart collaborations to further improve key aspects of service,” stated Mayor Brown. “We are proud of the work we’ve been doing since the launch of the 34andMore Recycle Buffalo and encourage City residents to support Recycling Reinvented, which focuses on the larger area of contaminants that is affecting cities across the United States.”
The effort to educate residents about what is recyclable has proven to substantially reduce contaminants in other cities, which saves cities money and makes the recycling process more efficient.
“When people put the wrong items in their recycling carts, handling those materials costs taxpayer dollars,” stated Susan Attridge, Director of Recycling and Refuse. “We want to help our residents correct these issues and recycle right. Our city is quickly becoming an environmental leader—not just in the U.S. but [also] in the world—and better recycling is an important step on that journey.”
Mayor Brown announced the Recycling Reinvented public awareness campaign at Dash’s Market on Hertel Avenue, where he also hosted a Community Plastic Bag Recycling Collection event
in recognition of America Recycles Day. Plastic bags are listed among the top contaminants in the green recycling totes for the City of Buffalo. Every person who brought plastic bags to the event received an eco-friendly reusable bag from the City of Buffalo. Mayor Brown also invited residents to sign the “Pledge to Use Reusable Bags”.
“As we continue to promote a more beautiful and environmentally friendly community, I thank Buffalo residents and Dash’s Market for continuing to support and improve our City’s recycling efforts,” said Mayor Brown. “America Recycles Day gives us another opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of recycling and to increase recycling by residents, consumers and businesses.”
America Recycles Day, a program founded by Keep America Beautiful in 1997, is the only nationally-recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. Tonight, Mayor Brown directed the top of historic City Hall be lit GREEN in recognition of America Recycles Day, and asked the Buffalo Landmark Illumination Team to light their structures and facilities in the same color.
Under the direction of Mayor Brown, the City of Buffalo continues its strong commitment to increase its recycling and recovery programs. In 2012, the City of Buffalo switched to single-stream curbside recycling for all residential structures as well as commercial entities in the designated commercial districts, followed by the launch of the 34andMore Buffalo Recycles program, with a recycling goal of 34%, the national recycling average. Since then, overall recycling rates increased from 15.9% in 2012 to 28.36% in 2017. This steady progress has been aided by several new recycling initiatives: Let’s DO This! Neighborhood Recycling Competition, Community Dare to Repair Café program, the Environmental Champions Program, in partnership with Buffalo Public Schools, and now the Recycling Reinvented campaign.
Mayor Brown continues to encourage all city residents, visitors and business owners to recycle. By building on the positive momentum, he hopes to achieve his recycling goal of 34%–the national recycling average. For more information about Buffalo’s Recycling program, please visit www.buffalony.gov.