Crayola Heeds Kids' Call to Divert Markers from Landfills

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Photo: Flickr/stevendepolo

Photo: Flickr/stevendepolo

Last year, a group of elementary school students and thousands of online supporters petitioned Crayola to start a take-back program to recycle its markers.

Now, the art supply giant is heeding the call with its recently established “ColorCycle” program, which will divert dried-up markers from landfills by converting them into a liquid fuel source.

After watching markers tossed in classroom garbage bins, a “Green Team” from Sun Valley School in San Rafael, Calif. started the initial petition last May with the help of school volunteer Land Wilson. The petition gained nearly 100,000 signatures before declaring victory.

“Crayola sent us a letter saying that it listened and is helping to reduce waste and pollution with a new program to ‘ColorCycle’ markers,” Wilson wrote on the petition page in June.

The Colorcycle program is available to schools across the continental United States and parts of Canada. Crayola will offer prepaid FedEx shipping labels to send collected markers to a conversion facility, where they will be turned into liquid fuel that can be used to power cars and heat homes, the company said.

Rival art supply manufacturer Dixon Ticonderoga also chimed in on the issue by starting its own marker recycling program last September.

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“We are happy that companies like Crayola and Dixon Ticonderoga are listening to kids like us!” Land wrote on his students’ behalf. “It feels good.”

To learn more about the ColorCycle program, visit Crayola online.

Mary Mazzoni

Based in the Phoenix metro area, Mary is a lifelong vegetarian and enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, biking and relaxing in the park. When she’s not outside, she’s probably watching baseball. She is a former assistant editor for Earth911.