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Study Shows St. Louis County Residents Increased Recycling

                                                P R E S S   R E L E A S E

September 9, 2009                        CONTACT:   Mary McReynolds, 
                                                                            St. Louis County Environmental Services
                                                                            Telephone: (218) 749-0648

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                               Laura Mulhern, Curbside Value Partnership
                                                                            Telephone: (813) 775-6209

                                                                  Pamala McCurdy, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
                                                                            Telephone: (651) 757-2559

 
                         
Study Shows St. Louis County Residents Increased Recycling
                   Partnership with State and Curbside Value Partnership sees 21% upswing in recycling


Recycle more?  That’s exactly what residents in St. Louis County have been doing.  As a supplement to the state’s Recycling MORE education campaign, St. Louis County joined forces with the Recycling Association of Minnesota, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and the national group, Curbside Value Partnership (CVP).  The St. Louis County Solid Waste Management Area and two other communities in Minnesota conducted and evaluated a focused education campaign over a four month period spanning from November, 2008 to March, 2009.  The results show an average 13% recycling increase for the three communities, with St. Louis County leading the way with a 21% increase in residential recycling.

St. Louis County and the other participants join a growing list of communities nationwide which benefit from CVP’s expertise in recycling education and measurement.  Beginning last November on America Recycles Day, St. Louis County, McCleod County and the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District worked closely with the CVP to improve recycling collection in collaboration with Recycle MORE, the State of Minnesota’s statewide initiative aimed at increasing residential recycling awareness and participation.

“We are very pleased that through our partnership our residents are recycling more,” said Ted Troolin, Environmental Services Director.  “The State set a lofty goal of increasing statewide
recycling by 50 percent by 2011, and our residents have proved they are up to the challenge.”

Minnesota was selected by CVP, a national invitation-only program designed to help communities grow their recycling programs through education, because of its leadership in recycling.  St. Louis County was chosen to participate due to its comprehensive recycling programs and the wealth of opportunities to recycle throughout the county.  The partnership implemented and measured a grassroots and social marketing campaign designed around existing Recycle MORE ads to reach
residents through strategic marketing and media relations.

To get the word out on the importance of recycling, St. Louis County launched a series of advertisements, including billboards, grocery store displays, movie theater and print ads, and local public access channel ads.  The advertisements were designed to motivate residents to recycle more at the curb and at the many drop-off sites throughout the county.

All materials dropped off at county sites, as well as materials collected through the curbside program in the Quad Cities and Hibbing are weighed, then processed and marketed through the county’s recycling processing facility.  Data collected was analyzed by CVP and showed that countywide recycling increased 21.3% over the base-line period.  This clearly demonstrates how St. Louis County residents are responding to the call to recycle more.


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