SANTA MONICA, CALIF. — The Natural Resources Defense Council has joined an alliance of business and environmental groups that wants to promote beverage container recycling.
New York-based NRDC joined the Businesses and Environmentalists Allied for Recycling, whose members include the Turner Foundation, Global Green USA, the GrassRoots Recycling Network and a large carpet manufacturer.
NRDC is joining because "96 percent of the plastics discarded in the municipal waste stream is not recycled," said NRDC senior scientist Allen Hershkowitz.
He said the NRDC has not put any money in the alliance. A source within BEAR said NRDC's contribution could include money, reaching out to its half-million members or participating in the group's research.
BEAR, which is run as part of Santa Monica-based Global Green USA, also has attracted Tomra of North America Inc., a reverse vending machine company in Stratford, Conn. A BEAR source said Tomra will make "substantial" financial contributions.
Tomra NA Chief Executive Officer Greg Garvey said his company likes the cooperative approach BEAR is trying to build between business and environmentalists, although he acknowledged that his company does business with Coca-Cola Co. and there are "philosophical differences" within BEAR.
BEAR is pushing the beverage industry to recycle 80 percent of its containers, and is negotiating to get Coke to use more recycled PET in its bottles.