Research Reports

The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) 2014 Community Access Survey (2014 Survey) shows that 96 percent of Americans have access to curbside and/or drop-off community-level paper and paperboard recycling. Access increased for each of the 12 grades of paper and paperboard included in the survey; access for nine of the 12 grades is now at or above 90 percent. Since 1994, AF&PA has performed a series of national surveys to measure the extent and track the growth of access to community-level paper and paperboard recycling. This Executive Summary presents background information on the survey methodology and highlights notable findings of the 2014 Survey, as well as trends from prior years. Complete details can be found in the report.

Press Releases

AF&PA Recycling Award Winners Demonstrate Value of Education and Innovation, Helping the Nation Maintain Record Paper Recovery Rate

Mar 28, 2011
Chuck Fuqua (202) 463-2466

CHICAGO –The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) today announced its 2011 Recycling Award winners, recognizing some of the great work being done by businesses, communities, and schools across the country to recover paper for recycling.

Thanks to the on-going daily efforts of millions of Americans, 63.5 percent of the paper consumed in the U.S. was recovered for recycling in 2010.  The recovery rate in 2009 was 63.4 percent.  Paper recovery for recycling has increased by 77% since 1990.  Coupled with the renewable nature of the raw material, recovering paper for recycling helps extend the life of paper and paper-based packaging products, and is an important part of the industry’s sustainable practices.

“Recycling is a true sustainability success story, bringing economic, environmental and social benefits to communities across the country” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman.  “It is through the tireless and innovative efforts of those engaged in programs such as those recognized with the 2011 AF&PA Recycling Awards that we have achieved such great heights.”

2011 AF&PA Recycling Award Winners:

One of the world’s leading global hospitality companies, MGM Resorts International operates a portfolio of destination resort brands including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage.  Proving that luxury and sustainability can co-exist, the corporation’s 60,000 employees recovered 10,913 tons of paper and paper-based packaging from their operations in 2010.

With the leadership of the OCRRA, the 450,000 residents of Onondaga County, NY recovered 165,000 tons of paper and paper-based packaging in 2010. Curbside collection, drop-off locations, and annual shredding and book recycling events are promoted through a comprehensive education and outreach program that incorporates multi-media advertising, newsletters, emails, and Facebook fan pages.

The Purdy High School recycling program in Southwest Missouri was initiated in 2005, with a dual goal of providing a service to the community and raising funds for the Spanish Club.  Just five years later, this self-sustaining program successfully recovered 26 tons of paper – 77 pounds per student – while providing rigorous academic integration and education for the community at large. 

AF&PA sponsors this annual awards program to recognize best in class efforts in education and innovation in recycling.  Details regarding the 2011 AF&PA Recycling Award-winning programs, along with descriptions of previous winners’ programs, background information, free classroom resources, and more are available at

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The American Forest & Paper Association is the national trade association of the forest products industry, representing pulp, paper, packaging and wood products manufacturers, and forest landowners.  Our companies make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources that sustain the environment.  The forest products industry accounts for approximately 5 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP.  Industry companies produce about $175 billion in products annually and employ nearly 900,000 men and women, exceeding employment levels in the automotive, chemicals and plastics industries.  The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 47 states.  Visit AF&PA online at