Cans as Trash to Cans for Cash

Cans for Cash is an upcoming promotion that emphasizes the following:

  • Recycling aluminum beverage cans reduces landfills and associated costs.
  • Selling aluminum cans to recyclers provides cities with the potential to generate additional income.
  • Cans for Cash helps build a sustainable environment.

Many times in the past year, I’ve chosen to highlight plastic bottles on this blog. At the Keep America Beautiful Conference in Atlanta this week, I learned from Patricia Persico, corporate communications manager of Novelis Corp., that “in 2007, the US recycled 54 billion aluminum cans.” That sounds great, doesn’t it, but “50% of all aluminum cans in this country wind up in landfills.” Aluminum cans CAN be recycled.

For me, aluminum cans, although I see them on the roadsides daily, fall below my radar because I rarely drink sodas. I drank a Pepsi in New Mexico two weeks ago from a can. The first for me in many months! Maybe years.

While I’m not an aluminum can consumer, many of my coworkers are. I’m going to put a recycling container in our breakroom tomorrow and start preventing those cans from going into the landfill. It’s a small step, but I can do it.

Watch for your local Keep America Beautiful affiliate to sponsor the Cans for Cash in October 2008.

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7 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Bellen said,

    In my 55+ SW Florida community, we have a Waste Management recycle multi-compartment large off-loaded container. While many of our residents do recycle, most don’t. One gentleman has taken it upon himself to collect and sell all aluminum (cans, garden furniture, siding, etc). Over the past 5 or so years (includes siding, carports, etc from Hurricane Charlie) he has returned about $10,000 to our community’s coffers!! How’s that for recycling?

    In states without ‘bottle bills’, like Florida, the incentive to recycle aluminum and plastic bottles just is not there. When you’ve paid an additional $.05 per can/bottle and can get the money back, most people will – especially now.

  2. 2

    Lakelandmom said,

    Thanks for the Cans for Cash info. I added it to my site, as well. I have emailed my mayor asking him to participate.

    You’re right, Bellen, I’m in Florida too and there isn’t much incentive to collect cans. I know many people who won’t have the clutter in/around their home or just don’t want to mess with it. Even my own family members give me a hard time about it. But I go on.

    Right now there’s a young lady who comes by our house about every two weeks on foot to get our cans. She’s suffering from some physical disabilities, so can collecting is her only real income. It’s alot of hard work walking in the Florida heat, but she seems to get alot of cans from my street alone.

  3. 3

    carrie said,

    I read that recycling one aluminum can saves enough electricity to power a TV for 3 hours.

  4. 4

    cynthia harris said,

    who could i get cash for cans

  5. 5

    planettrash said,

    This is a program sponsored by Keep America Beautiful for their affiliates. You need to contact your local group to participate. Thanks for reading.

  6. 6

    Emy said,

    I’m part of student council at my high school and we’re starting a cans for cash program, with the money we cash we’re going to use it to buy needed items for Haiti.

  7. 7

    planettrash said,

    That’s fantastic. Thanks.


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