Contact: Jennifer Killinger (202) 249-6619 
Email: jennifer_killinger@americanchemistry.com

Many Want Better Information about What to Recycle, Particularly for Plastics

WASHINGTON (November 14, 2014) - A new national survey conducted in advance of  America Recycles Day (November 15) finds that half of Americans say they recycle 75 percent or more of their recyclable items. Eight percent say they recycle all recyclables. The survey, conducted by global insights firm Kelton Global, finds that nearly two thirds of Americans say they recycle on a "regular basis."

While these figures sound like good news for the environment, they contrast with the national recycling rate of 34.5 percent in 2012, as measured by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

According to the survey results, many Americans say they would recycle more if they had better information about what to recycle, particularly for plastics. Forty-six percent say they are more likely to recycle when they know that an item is recyclable, as opposed to when they are unsure. Among those who say they don't recycle all the time, 28 percent say it's because they don't know which plastic items are recyclable.

"While nearly all Americans have access to recycling today, this survey shows that better communication and easier access to relevant information should help improve participation rates," said Steve Russell , vice president of plastics for the American Chemistry Council, which sponsors the Plastics Make it Possible® initiative and this survey. "That's why programs such as America Recycles Day and efforts to streamline collection of plastics are essential to increasing recycling ."

America Recycles Day  is sponsored by the nonprofit  Keep America Beautiful and is the nationally recognized day dedicated to encouraging Americans to recycle. Keep America Beautiful also is running the national " I Want to Be Recycled " campaign to encourage greater awareness of the importance of recycling. In addition, supporters of plastics recycling recently developed  new guidelines to help communities nationwide communicate about plastics recycling.

Kelton Global surveyed 1,006 adults (18 and over) from September 19 to 26, 2014, to gauge perceptions and sentiments on recycling in the United States.

For more information on plastics and sustainability, visit plasticsmakeitpossible.com .

News

News & Resources

View our resource center to find press releases, testimonies, infographics and more.

Jobs

Jobs and Economic Impact

The business of chemistry provides 811,000 skilled, good-paying American jobs—earning 44 percent more than the average manufacturing pay.