RecycleBank Expands Philadelphia Program Citywide

Date: December 3, 2009

Source: RecycleBank

Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced the citywide expansion of its rewards-based recycling program conducted by RecycleBank. It is an expansion of its pilot program begun in 2005 that rewards residents based on the weight of their recycling containers. Rewards points are redeemable for goods and services at over 140 participating national, regional and local businesses. The city is using a $700,000 stimulus grant to help pay for retrofitting recycling collection vehicles with on-board weighing equipment. "Single stream recycling has proven so effective in increasing the amount of recyclables collected, and we will build upon that momentum as we add RecycleBank," said Mayor Nutter. The city will pay Recycle Bank based on the amount of money that it saves by diverting materials from landfills, where dumping costs about $65 a ton. Recycling had brought revenue before the markets for them collapsed last year.


Mayor Nutter Kicks off Revolutionary Recycling With Rewards in Philadelphia

  • RecycleBank Rewards Program Helps Promote Sustainability and Savings for All

PHILADELPHIA, THURSDAY, Dec. 3, 2009 — Mayor Michael A. Nutter along with the Philadelphia Recycling office will announce today that Philadelphia is launching the RecycleBank rewards service. RecycleBank will reward households in Philadelphia for the amount they recycle and the waste diverted from the landfill. All participating Philadelphia residents will be able to put all recyclables into one container - any container. Simply add a ‘Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Sticker', and be rewarded for their efforts. In addition to rewards for recycling, residents in Philadelphia will be the first in the nation to be rewarded for overall waste reduction. This bold move from the Mayor's Office is in line with Mayor Nutter's green initiatives and goals for becoming the greenest city in the nation.

"Single stream recycling has proven so effective in increasing the amount of recyclables collected, and we will build upon that momentum as we add RecycleBank," said Mayor Nutter. "With the addition of the RecycleBank rewards program, Philadelphia is proud to share the cost savings with the city residents because everyone that gets involved wins! This is a huge plus for the City and every resident who cares about our future." Recycling saves Philadelphia millions of dollars annually by avoiding landfill disposal fees and generates revenue for Philadelphia from the sales of recyclables.

RecycleBank motivates households to recycle by rewarding them for the amount they recycle. RecycleBank measures the amount of material recycled and then converts that amount into RecycleBank Points that can be redeemed for rewards, gift cards, groceries, merchandise and events at hundreds of national, regional and local businesses. RecycleBank partners that accept RecycleBank Points include major retailers and brands such as Coca-Cola, Kraft, Seventh Generation, Dick's Sporting Goods, Ruby Tuesday, CVS/pharmacy and Bed, Bath & Beyond and local business such as select Shop Rite locations, Fresh Grocer, Acme, Reading Terminal Market, Rite Aid, Las Cazuelas, Second Street Pizza, London Grill, and hundreds more. Philadelphia residents will also have an option to donate their RecycleBank Points to local charities and environmental initiatives at local schools through the RecycleBank Green Schools Program. Residents in Philadelphia will be able to earn hundreds of dollars worth of rewards for their household recycling each year.

Beginning in February 2010, Philadelphia households will receive their individual RecycleBank accounts where they track their recycling activity, check their RecycleBank Points balance and redeem their Points."Philadelphia took the initiative in 2005 to be the first City to pilot our service and since then we have grown to service millions of people in over 24 states and the UK. We are proud and excited to have the opportunity to continue to service the City of Philadelphia." said Ron Gonen, CEO and co-founder of RecycleBank. "We look forward to helping the City of Philadelphia become a model of urban environmental management.

"Philadelphia Recycling Rewards will benefit everyone. It means that simply by recycling, you'll not only help ease the strain on the city budget and the environment, but you'll also help yourself to some well-deserved rewards," said Clarena I. W. Tolson, Streets Commissioner. "The more you and your neighbors recycle the more rewards you'll earn. Recycling pays in so many ways, but never like this!" During lean economic times like we are experiencing today, savings on groceries, pharmacy products, school supplies, even movie tickets is of incredible value.

Members redeem their RecycleBank Points online or via phone, where they can also learn about their personal environmental footprint through recycling, read about easy ways to be greener, and learn what happens to recyclables once picked up curbside. To date, RecycleBank members have cumulatively saved over 3.2 million trees and over 215 million gallons of oil through recycling.

For more information regarding recycling, please contact the City of Philadelphia Streets Department's recycling hotline at 215-685-7329 or visit For information on RecycleBank, call toll free at 888-769-7960 or visit


RecycleBank® partners with cities to increase recycling, collection efficiency and to support local economies. RecycleBank utilizes its proprietary software and three-step process Recycle, Record, Reward™ to measure the amount of material each home recycles and then convert the amount recycled into RecycleBank Points that can be used to shop at hundreds of local and national rewards partners. RecycleBank currently provides service to more than one million members across the U.S. and the U.K. and has over 2,000 local, regional and national businesses that accept RecycleBank Points earned for recycling. RecycleBank has been recognized with a number of business and environmental awards, including as a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and as a Champion of the Earth by the United Nations Environmental Programme. Ron Gonen is the co-founder and CEO of RecycleBank and investors include Sigma Partners, RRE Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caulfield and Byers, Generation Investment Management, The Westly Group and Columbia University. RecycleBank is a global company headquartered in New York City. For more information, visit, fan us at and follow us at

For more information, contact:
Melody Serafino

Maura Kennedy
Office of the Mayor
215- 686-6210

Sign up to receive our free Weekly News Bulletin