August 15, 2018  

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USM Gulf Park Earns Recycling Bins through Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Grant Program

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The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) Gulf Park campus has recently earned a Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Bin Grant to help increase recycling and sustainability efforts on the state’s only beachfront campus.

As part of the 2017 Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Bin grant cycle, 3,250 bins are currently being distributed to communities, including 20 bins to the USM Gulf Park campus, which helped bring the total count of recycling bins donated to local communities by Coca-Cola to 1 million.

“We are extremely pleased to be a recipient of the Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Grant on our Gulf Park campus,” said Steve Miller, Vice President for the Gulf Park campus. “The new bins are not only helping to increase our recycling efforts, but they are also helping to raise awareness for continued sustainability on our beautiful campus.”

On the USM Gulf Park campus, bins were distributed in high traffic areas and placed near existing trash receptacles to encourage more recycling by students, faculty, staff and visitors. Adding these recycling-specific receptacles helps to address some of the primary barriers to recycling in public spaces – access and convenience.

“Coca-Cola has a long history of supporting community recycling programs in an effort to ensure that our packaging is recycled and reused,” said Bruce Karas, vice president of sustainability, Coca-Cola North America. “Through partnerships like Keep America Beautiful, we are able to improve access to recycling while also continuing to make progress towards our global goal of collecting and recycling a bottle or can for every one we sell.”

The Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Bin Grant Program supports Coca-Cola’s newly announced World without Waste initiative, which aims to collect and recycle a bottle or can for every one the Company sells by 2030. In addition to the grants, Keep America Beautiful provides technical best practice guidance to grant recipients and organizations about setting up effective away-from-home and on-the-go recycling programs.

“To encourage people to recycle frequently, we need to make sure they have the proper bins available in as many locations as possible,” said Helen Lowman, president and CEO, Keep America Beautiful. “The support Coca-Cola has given us to continue with this grant program allows us to address this issue and create thousands of new opportunities for people to recycle in public areas across the country.”

Other USM Gulf Park recycling efforts include campus signage and messages promoting recycling; recycling receptacles in campus offices, meeting rooms, and classrooms; and periodic educational tabling events and activities to promote reducing, reusing, and recycling.

USM Gulf Park campus recycling bins were made possible by a grant from Keep America Beautiful and the Coca-Cola Foundation. A full list of the 2017 Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Public Space Recycling Bin Grant recipients are available at http://bingrant.org.