How To Get Involved in America Recycles Day

America Recycles Day

Every fall, we here at Earth911 anxiously await our favorite holiday. No, it’s not Halloween or Thanksgiving (although those are pretty great, too) — it’s America Recycles Day, coming up on November 15.

America Recycles Day (ARD) is the only nationally recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. A Keep America Beautiful (KAB) initiative, this annual event started in 1997 to spread the word on the importance of recycling and to educate others on how to recycle correctly. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also offers an annual recycling innovation fair event online for free. Every year on and around November 15, thousands of local event organizers plan activities to encourage and help people throughout their communities to recycle.

Not everyone knows that there is a right and wrong way to recycle, but there is! In fact, one of the biggest barriers to recycling is knowing what items can (and cannot) be recycled. ARD events help individuals understand the value of recycling correctly — and why it’s so important that we all participate.

Many of this year’s events are virtual because of the COVID-19 pandemic. If you participate in a live event, please follow state and local health guidelines pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Doing Your Part

Wondering how to get involved in America Recycles Day? KAB invites you to register for a volunteer account so that they can keep you up-to-date as this year’s events are added by their national network.

Recycling well is more than simply placing items in a curbside bin. As part of America Recycles Day, communities across the nation educate individuals about how and what they can recycle and conduct special recycling events for items that are not accepted in local curbside bins.

KAB is working with other recycling stakeholders to encourage Americans to recycle more and help establish a consistent recycling platform for America. They invite you, your family, and friends from work, school, and neighborhood to participate in America Recycles Day and to take the #BeRecycled Pledge in a collective national effort to improve recycling.

Organize an Event

If you’d like to organize your own event, KAB has tools to help you get started.

Some examples of previous events include a “fall into recycling” event to swap Halloween costumes and compost leftover pumpkins, a free electronics recycling event to reduce e-waste, a waste-free lunch at a middle school, and a pledge drive at a neighborhood meeting. KAB loves unique recycling-related ideas!

We know Americans have a strong commitment to recycling and we encourage you to host a special recycling event that goes beyond the bin in your community. By registering your event with America Recycles Day, you join a strong network of individuals and organizations across the nation committed to improving curbside recycling and building a comprehensive recycling platform for America” — Helen Lowman, president & CEO of Keep America Beautiful.

On Tap This Year

Below is a sampling of the events scheduled for 2020. Be sure to register for a volunteer account to learn about more events as they get scheduled.

To find local events near you, start with this Google search.

National Virtual Events

EPA America Recycles Summit (virtual)

November 17, 2020, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. EST

EPA America Recycles Innovation Fair (virtual)

November 16, 2020, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST

Wishful Recycling Panel Discussion (virtual)

Keep Charlotte Beautiful, Charlotte, NC
November 16, 2020, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Topics include What is Wishful Recycling, What is E-Waste & the Dell ReConnect Program, What is Wishful Composting, and more. Learn more about this virtual panel discussion.

Recycle Right Virtual Presentation (virtual)

Keep Charlotte Beautiful, Charlotte, NC
November 17, 2020, 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. EST
This “Recycle Right” virtual presentation webinar is presented by Mecklenburg County Independent Recycling Educators Maitri Meyer and Walker Spruill. Learn more and pre-register for this virtual presentation.

The 7R’s of Waste Reduction Webinar (virtual)

Keep Charlotte Beautiful, Charlotte, NC
November 19, 2020, 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST

Take the Pledge

As part of America Recycles Day, KAB encourages you to ask your networks how they live a recycled lifestyle by taking the #BeRecycled Pledge, committing to reduce, reuse, recycle in all aspects of daily life. To date, more than 83,476 people have taken the pledge to:

  • Learn. I will find out what materials are collected for recycling in my community.
  • Act. Within the next month, I will reduce the amount of waste I produce, I will recycle more, and I will buy products made with recycled content.
  • Share. In the next month, I will encourage one family member or one friend to take the #BeRecycled pledge.

Learn more about America Recycles Day at AmericaRecyclesDay.org.

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This article was updated in November 2020.

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