WASHINGTON, DC –The 2011 American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) School Recycling Award will be presented in a ceremony this evening to Purdy High School in Southwest Missouri. The annual awards recognize outstanding school, business, and community paper recycling programs across the country.
“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 people engaged in programs, such as Purdy High School, that we have achieved such great heights.”
The Purdy High School recycling program was initiated in 2005, with a dual goal to provide a service to the community and raise funds for their Spanish Club. Just five years later, this self-sustaining, all-volunteer program successfully recovered 26 tons of paper - 77 pounds per student – while providing rigorous academic integration and education for the community at large. The program seeks to train students who in turn teach their families about the value of recyclables and the environment.
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. 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 commitment to sustainability.
Just last month, AF&PA launched a new initiative - Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 – to further that commitment to sustainability. As part of this initiative, a new recovery for recycling goal has been set to exceed 70 percent by 2020. The participation of millions of Americans who collect paper for recycling at home, school and work every day will be essential to achieving this new goal, and programs, such as that initiated by Purdy High School, are examples of how we can all help recover paper for recycling. More information on the Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 initiative can be found at www.afandpa.org/sustainability.
AF&PA sponsors the annual recycling 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 www.paperrecyces.org.
AF&PA is the national trade association of the forest, paper, and wood products industry. AF&PA represents companies and related associations that engage in or represent the manufacture of pulp, paper, paperboard, and wood products. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 6 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing output, employs more than one million people, and ranks among the top 10 manufacturing employers in 42 states with an estimated payroll exceeding $50 billion. Visit AF&PA online at www.afandpa.org.