November 28, 2021–3:00 p.m.
Keep Rome-Floyd Beautiful, the Rome-Floyd Recycling Center and the Ball Corporation, through its aluminum can and cup manufacturing plants in Shannon are creating a partnership to highlight the importance of recycling, specifically, aluminum cans and cups.
Emma Wells, the former Keep Rome-Floyd Beautiful coordinator, now Director of the Solid Waste Department for Floyd County, explained that the idea is to capture as much aluminum as possible because it is infinitely recyclable. “We want people to know that when they recycle a can, that within three months, it can become another can,” Wells said.
The new Ball aluminum cup plant was built with the idea of creating an alternative to plastic beverage cups. While the cups can be re-used on multiple occasions, they are designed to be crushed after use and recycled.
“Ball Corporation is proud of our partnership with Floyd County and Keep Rome Floyd Beautiful,” said Mason Hogan, Director of Operation for the new Ball aluminum cup plant in Shannon. “Our company aims to be the best corporate steward within our local communities by increasing recycle rates on used beverage cans which drives down the need for new aluminum and decreases emissions in our supply chain.”
New Keep Rome-Floyd Beautiful Director Hannah Bagley said that a couple of new recycling bins have been placed downtown. Bagley explained the partnership may develop a speaker’s series to go out into the local schools to promote recycling. She is also investigating the possibility of starting a competition between schools to collect recycled aluminum as a fundraiser. “It could be a school versus school or class versus class; a fun atmosphere to get kids involved,” Bagley said.
Several events are being planned for 2022, including a big event in conjunction with the celebration of Earth Day in April. Keep Rome-Floyd Beautiful is working to facilitate a recycling program to make it easier for Rome businesses that distribute the new aluminum beverage cups to recycle. Bagley hopes that funds can be sourced to purchase special recycling containers that can be placed inside restaurants in downtown Rome that distribute the new aluminum beverage cups.
Over the last five years, Rome and Floyd County residents have sent 42.3 tons of aluminum (not necessarily all beverage cans or cups) through the recycling center on Lavender Drive. Wells said that it takes approximately 75,000 cans to make a ton so that could mean Romans have recycled as many as 3.17 million cans over the last five years.
For more information on aluminum recycling and all recycling programs in Rome and Floyd County, visit: https://www.keepromefloydbeautiful.org