Starting today, Alcoa Foundation and DoSomething.org, the largest U.S. organization for teens and social change, will run the biggest youth-led aluminum can recycling drive in the country, targeting high school students. The goal of the drive is to activate a minimum of 40,000 young people across the U.S. to participate in the campaign, which runs from today through December 18, 2012. It is part of Alcoa Foundation’s 2012 Clinton Global Initiative commitment, in which the organization will grant a minimum of $2 million over 2012 and 2013 to fund new, innovative recycling programs throughout the United States that educate and activate students of all ages, incentivize behavior change, and increase access to recycling programs. Aluminum is infinitely recyclable, but not everyone knows this - especially teens. Many schools have recycling programs that encourage students to recycle, but they don’t talk about why recycling aluminum is important or have fun and valuable incentives for teens to participate. “50 Cans” will use an innovative model to educate and encourage teens nationally to recycle aluminum cans that otherwise would be thrown in the trash. It is estimated that more than $800 million worth of aluminum is buried in landfills each year. That’s not only a boatload of valuable aluminum; it’s also a lot of wasted energy. Recycling just one can provides enough energy to listen to a whole album on your iPod, with six cans you can watch all eight of the Harry Potter movies and with 100 you can keep your bedroom light on for two whole weeks. Using the web, social media, and text messaging, teens who run drives will get the chance to win a $5,000 scholarship. Every 50 cans collected means one more ticket into the scholarship lottery! Participants will also get additional opportunities to win the scholarship by sharing statistics about aluminum recycling with friends via text.
“Alcoa Foundation is excited to partner with DoSomething.org to educate, empower and motivate teens to recycle and initiate recycling programs in their towns and schools,” says Paula Davis, president, Alcoa Foundation. “To increase recycling rates, Alcoa focuses on building awareness, providing greater access to infrastructure and offering incentives that inspire behavior change. DoSomething.org is a great partner to mobilize young people and help us achieve these objectives creatively for maximum community impact."“DoSomething.org encourages young people to take action around the issues they care about, and we know one of those issues is the environment,” notes Alyssa Ruderman, DoSomething.org campaign lead for “50 Cans.” “Cans are everywhere – the lunchroom, the movie theatre, the mall –everywhere that teens are. We’re excited to partner with Alcoa in challenging our members to make an impact by collecting and recycling in their communities.” About Alcoa Foundation Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately US$446 million. Founded more than 50 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than US$550 million since 1952. In 2011, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than US$20 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships, engaging its people to improve the environment and educating tomorrow’s leaders. The work of Alcoa Foundation is further enhanced by Alcoa’s thousands of employee volunteers who share their energy, passion and purpose to make a difference in the communities where Alcoa operates. Through the company’s signature Month of Service program, in 2011, a record 56 percent of Alcoa employees took part in more than 1,200 events across 24 countries, reaching 81,000 children, serving 9,000 meals, planting 34,000 trees and supporting 1,800 nonprofit organizations. More information can be found at www.alcoafoundation.com. About Alcoa Alcoa (NYSE:AA) is the world’s leading producer of primary and fabricated aluminum, as well as the world’s largest miner of bauxite and refiner of alumina. In addition to inventing the modern-day aluminum industry, Alcoa innovation has been behind major milestones in the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation, consumer electronics and industrial markets over the past 120 years. Among the solutions Alcoa markets are flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, as well as Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, and building systems in addition to its expertise in other light metals such as titanium and nickel-based super alloys. Sustainability is an integral part of Alcoa’s operating practices and the product design and engineering it provides to customers. Alcoa has been a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for 11 consecutive years and approximately 75 percent of all of the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in active use today. Alcoa employs approximately 61,000 people in 31 countries across the world. More information can be found at www.alcoa.com. About DoSomething.org We love teens. They are creative, active, wired... and frustrated that our world is so messed up. DoSomething.org harnesses that awesome energy and unleashes it on causes teens care about. Almost every week, we launch a new national campaign. The call to action is always something that has a real impact and doesn't require money, an adult, or a car. With a goal of 5 million active members by 2015, DoSomething.org is one of the largest organizations in the US for teens and social change. Join us at www.DoSomething.org.