The aluminum beverage container recycling rate climbed 7 percentage points to 65.1 percent in 2011, according to a new report.
That translates in 61 billion cans recycled in 2011, according to a news release from the Arlington, Va.-based Aluminum Association, the Washington-based Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) and the Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI), also based in Washington. The recycling rate was 58.1 percent in 2010.
A large share of the increase came from imports of used beverage containers. Imports in 2011 increased approximately 25 percent, emphasizing the need for improved recycling among U.S. consumers as well as the value of aluminum, the associations said. Because of a high demand for recycled aluminum cans in the United States, the aluminum industry buys used containers from Mexico, Canadaand other countries.
"We are excited to have made strong progress toward our goal to increase the aluminum can recycling rate to 75 percent," said Heidi Brock, Aluminum Association president, "but we need the help of every American to continue to raise the rate. There is much more work still to be done here in the United Statesto reach our goal by 2015."