Toss Magazines, Catalogs in Recycling Bin, New Yorkers Urged

NEW YORK, New York, January 30, 2008 (ENS) – Getting more New Yorkers to recycle their magazines and catalogs instead of throwing them in the trash is the goal of a new campaign launched today by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

ReMix – Recycling Magazines is Excellent! – is a national public education campaign that has conducted pilot programs in Boston, Milwaukee, and Portland, Oregon. Now New York City will roll out an intensive advertising push in an effort to reduce the solid waste going into city landfills.

Beginning next week, New Yorkers will see ReMix promotions on buses, taxis and subways, in movie theatres, on cable television, on billboards and in full-page public service advertisements in consumer magazines such as TIME, Cosmopolitan, Country Living and Sports Illustrated. The total value of paid placements and in-kind donations for the ReMix campaign will top $3 million.

“To meet the ambitious goals in our landmark Solid Waste Management Plan, we need to increase recycling rates, and we know we can do a better job recycling magazines and catalogs,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Many New Yorkers don’t realize that magazines, catalogs, phone books, and other kinds of paper are just as recyclable as newspapers and office paper.”

Stacks of old magazines can
be recycled. (Photo credit

Some consumers think glossy paper is a contaminant in paper recycling. This may have been true in the early days of recycling, but markets and paper recycling technology have changed and now all community recycling programs accept magazines and catalogs for recycling. Companies need these materials to make new paper products.

The ReMix campaign began when a study by Time Inc. and Verso Paper found that while 95 percent of all unsold newsstand magazines are recycled by newsstands and publishers, only about 17 percent of sold magazines are recycled.

Based in Tennessee, Verso Paper makes the kind of coated papers used in magazines, catalogs, high-end advertising brochures, annual reports and direct-mail advertising.

“Today’s leadership companies recognize that holistically integrating environmental issues into their business operations promotes a sustainable world,” said Time Inc. Director of Sustainable Development David Refkin. “As a New York City-based company, Time is thrilled to bring ReMix to our home town.”

Verso CEO Mike Jackson said, “Today, more than half – 53.4 percent – of all paper consumed in the United States is recovered for reuse. By focusing on catalogs and magazines, we can do even better. And, as an added benefit, diverting magazines and catalogs from landfills for recycling into other products helps reduce methane emissions by reducing the amount of paper that biodegrades in landfills.”

Joining the ReMix effort for the New York City campaign are the Hearst Corporation, which publishes nearly 200 magazines around the world, including Cosmopolitan and O, The Oprah Magazine.

“Recovery and reuse is one of the cornerstones of Hearst’s sustainable paper platform and increasing the recovery of magazines will help meet the growing demand for recovered paper,” said David Schirmer, Hearst Enterprises vice president and general manager.

Other partners are Pratt Industries, Time Warner Cable, the Council on the Environment of New York City and its Office of Recycling Outreach and Education and the New York City Department of Sanitation.

“As the Department of Sanitation works to make our city not only cleaner, but greener, we are always looking for ways to reach out to the public to encourage them to recycle,” said New York Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty. “This public awareness program, supported by leaders in the city’s magazine industry, can help us turn a new page in reducing our solid waste.”

Anthony Pratt, who heads paper and packaging giant Pratt Industries, pointed out, “Recycling is a major weapon against climate change – every ton of paper we divert from the landfill saves 1.2 tons of greenhouse gas emissions from going into the atmosphere.”

“Our national research showed that Americans support recycling, but are often uncertain about what can be recycled,” said Kate Krebs, executive director of the National Recycling Coalition, which is a ReMix partner.

“We know that New Yorkers have embraced recycling as a way to keep waste out of landfills and improve the environment,” she said. “Today, the mayor and city officials, leading companies and advocacy organizations are launching ReMix in New York City to make sure everyone knows just how easy it is to recycle magazines and catalogs right along with their other paper recycling.”

New Yorkers who want more information about ReMix and magazine and catalog recycling may call 311 or visit [].

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