Prompted by the World Environment Day, UK organisation Every Can Counts, whose mission is to see every aluminium can recycled, has launched a campaign that will run simultaneously in 15 countries and 19 locations across Europe.
On 5 June, small teams set up with colourful backpacks will encourage people to keep outdoor spaces clean and promote drinks cans’ recycling throughout lakes, city squares, parks and shopping streets.
The backpackers participating in the European Recycling Tour 2021 will be seen in Austria, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
Each tour location will celebrate public spaces and deliver the campaign’s message in a different way, including outdoor games, dance acts and Every Can Count’s now famous rainbow of cans art installation. Passers-by will also be asked to drop their used drink cans in the backpacks to make sure they will be recycled.
“Outdoor public spaces provided a much-needed escapism during the pandemic, and now is our turn to help protect them from an impending ‘littering pandemic’, a phenomenon we have sadly witnessed lately on a global scale,” said David Van Heuverswyn, director of Every Can Counts Europe.
“But World Environment Day is also a great opportunity to inspire people to put their empties in the right bin and invite them to be part of our vision for a 100 per cent real aluminium drink can recycling.”
This is the first time the backpack campaign will run on a European scale, after a similar ‘on the go’ recycling and awareness initiative took place locally in 2017.
A poll conducted by Every Can Counts in Europe last year found that more than three-quarters of respondents always or often put their drinks packaging in the recycling bin when at home, while only 48 per cent recycle in outdoor locations.
At the same time, 93 per cent of Europeans said they would like to see more recycling bins on the streets, in public spaces, parks, beaches, or on trails.