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Waste Not
Heineken First Brewer to Join National Effort to Increase Curbside Recycling

Heineken has become the first alcohol company member of the The Recycling Partnership, a national nonprofit committed to improving curbside residential recycling, according to a recent announcement.

As a leading sponsor, the brewer will provide industry expertise to help improve consumer education, elevate the quality of curbside recycling and drive increased recovery of recyclable glass in communities nationwide.

The Recycling Partnership works to improve recycling in communities across the country.

“Our programs create lasting and measurable value,” said Keefe Harrison, Executive Director of The Recycling Partnership, in a statement. “Currently, our work is reaching 71 communities which represents over 1.2 million households. Our model is scalable and with each new member, our reach expands.”

Improving curbside recycling significantly reduces impacts on the environment and leads to healthier and more sustainable communities, Heineken said in a statement. Increased recycling in the Recycling Partnership’s first six grantee communities translates to a ten year savings of 485,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e). That equates to the annual energy use of more than 44 thousand homes.

Globally, Heineken has a long track record for promoting sustainability. The company’s Brewing a Better World program focuses on issues including carbon emissions reduction, community partnerships and sustainable sourcing.

Heineken says it wants to ensure that its products are consumed responsibly throughout their entire lifecycle, and that includes the consistent and efficient recycling of its bottles and cans. Educating consumers and working with communities to support recycling is critical to the company’s Brewing a Better World strategy.

The company also is active in promoting water conservation in the developing world. Earlier this year, Heineken announced plans to team up with The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) as part of a sustainability initiative to support environmental and social growth movements in the developing world. The core focus of the partnership will be water stewardship and conservation, especially in those areas classified as being “water-scarce” — communities vulnerable to the range of issues that come alongside drought. The initiative will primarily concentrate on Heineken breweries in Algeria, Egypt, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria and Tunisia, which currently fall into this category.

In addition to contributing to local communities, the UNIDO partnership is helping to increase Heineken’s renewable energy provision globally. Last year the company announced it had doubled its renewable energy generation, increasing the percentage of renewable electricity it uses in its global operations from 9.3 percent in 2012 to 18 percent, to a total of 358,100,000 kWh.