Kum & Go announced that a total of 268-bottle-shaped recycling containers have been installed near fuel pumps at all 42 Kum & Go stores in Greater Des Moines as part of the “At the Pump Recycling” project.
Kum & Go is collaborating on the project with Waste Management of Iowa Inc. and RecycleMe Iowa. Customers are invited to celebrate America Recycles Day on Friday, Nov. 15, by placing recyclable beverage containers into the new bins while stopping at Kum & Go stores in the metro area. No other convenience store retailer offers recycling at the pump in the Des Moines area, according to Adam Hammes, Kum & Go sustainability manager.
The expansion builds on the success of a pilot program that began at four local Kum & Go stores in April 2012. According to audits managed by Waste Management of Iowa Inc., this pilot diverted more than 86,050 pounds of recyclable materials from the Metro Waste Authority’s landfills in the first six months.
“Waste Management applauds Kum & Go for taking the initiative to provide convenient recycling containers for their on-the-go customers,” said Mike Tunney, recycling director for Waste Management of Iowa Inc. “Recycling often and recycling right are the easiest things we can do 365 days a year, and this collaboration provides another opportunity to recycle as we travel.”
The recycling initiative strategically places recycling containers next to fuel pumps to provide easy and accessible recycling opportunities for customers. The container itself resembles a plastic bottle and was designed to stand out as a recycling receptacle to distinguish itself from a trash container.
“Kum & Go is committed to leading our industry in sustainable practices and being a responsible corporate citizen in the communities that we serve,” said Hammes. “Together with Waste Management of Iowa and RecycleMe Iowa, we’re proud to provide a simple and effective way to help customers recycle at our stores, and we’re thrilled to offer this solution at every Kum & Go convenience store in the Des Moines area.”
Kum & Go received a $20,000 grant for the expansion project from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Solid Waste Alternative Program (SWAP). These funds were used to partially fund the recycling containers at the pumps. Kum & Go partnered with RecycleMe Iowa to help deploy and install the new bins.
Kum & Go’s dedication to environmental sustainability will be recognized Friday, Nov. 15, when the company receives the 2013 Recycling Innovator! Award from The Metropolitan Environmental Trust of Tulsa, Okla. Kum & Go will be honored for its joint on-the-go recycling program in partnership with PepsiCo. This program has expanded from a pilot project to all of Tulsa’s 47 Kum & Go locations, where a bottle-shaped recycling bin is available near every fuel pump.
Kum & Go stores also are saving energy and water through the company’s commitment to sustainable practices. New stores are designed, constructed and submitted for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification. Kum & Go currently has 66 LEED-certified stores, with 14 additional projects under construction—the most of any convenience retailer in the nation.