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For the environment, jobs and new products from old materials, keep investing in recycling

In today’s fractured political climate there are few things we can all agree upon, but Twin City residents of all political stripes can support actions that help foster good local jobs and a healthy environment. You can do just that by making sure that clean recyclables make it into your curbside recycling cart instead of the trash can.

Keefe Harrison

Recycling is more than just taking a bottle, can or box out of the trash; it creates material for manufacturing new products out of that plastic, aluminum, steel, paper or cardboard, and in turn supports jobs right here at home. That’s why so many organizations, companies and political leaders have come together here in Minnesota to support this important industry.

At The Recycling Partnership, with help from funders like hometown-headquartered Target and the City of St. Paul, we helped bring recycling carts to more than 78,000 residents. Other organizations like the Closed Loop Fund, along with RSF Social Finance and Calvert Foundation, helped fund almost $10 million in improvements to Minneapolis non-profit Eureka Recycling, a national leader in recycling processing.

Rep. Keith Ellison has also spoken out boldly in favor of waste prevention. Late last month in Minneapolis he addressed more than 50 local recycling officials and 500 attendees at the Resource Recycling Conference. In an inspiring speech, Rep. Ellison called for a zero waste revolution that would benefit both our environment and our economy.

As Ellison said when he reintroduced the Zero Waste Development and Expansion Act earlier this year, “Zero Waste is about preventing waste at the source and reusing the rest. It’s also about creating local jobs, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and using our limited resources wisely.”

We appreciate Ellison's leadership and call on all Minnesotans to continue investing in recycling, because supporting good jobs while keeping our Twin Cities clean is something we can all get behind.

Keefe Harrison is the CEO of The Recycling Partnership, a national nonprofit organization that applies corporate partner funding to improve recycling systems in cities and towns across the nation.

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Comments (1)

Thanks ....

I have read that if we properly recycle electronics, copper would not need to be mined according to the copper industry itself. We have to keep in mind that the mining industry might not be the same as the cover industry that takes the mined materials and prepares the mineral for use in manufacturing. I suspect it would cheaper for the industry that refines the mineral to reuse rather then bring the mineral up manufacturing use standards. Eliminating mining would be helpful to the Earth. And to NE MN.