In recognition of National Recycling Day, State General Services Secretary Curt Topper encouraged the public to “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle,” noting that this approach has helped the commonwealth turn waste into reusable materials and generate nearly $1.1 million in revenue for the commonwealth.

“The Commonwealth Agency Recycling Program is an excellent way for us to be environmentally conscious and fiscally responsible,” Secretary Topper noted. “The program uses the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle approach to not only create a recycling mindset in the office, but one that also crosses over into our employees lives beyond the workplace.”

The 3Rs – Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle – refer to three terms often used when talking about waste. Reducing is cutting back on the amount of trash people make, reusing is finding a new way to use trash so it doesn’t have to be thrown out, and recycling is using trash to make new goods that can be sold again.

The Commonwealth Agency Recycling Program assists state agencies in the identification, collection, and disposal of recyclable items ranging from office paper and cardboard to scrap metals and electronic waste. This year, the program has recycled 1,084,300 pounds of paper, 429,515 pounds of cardboard and over 85,000 pounds of bottles and cans. In addition, the commonwealth has securely destroyed enough data hosting media to power a two-bedroom home for a month.“While we’re proud of the work we’ve been able to do, we realize the importance of ensuring that our employees receive timely reminders and information on how they can properly support our recycling efforts,” Topper noted.

Building upon the successes the office has experienced, the Commonwealth Agency Recycling Program will roll out an interactive web-based training on recycling for employees in December. The training will focus on the 3Rs and the importance of separate stream recycling.