Residents of North Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, Fairmount, and Fishtown start earning Philadelphia Recycling Rewards, More Neighborhoods Coming Each Month

Recycling Rewards Program Benefits Residents, Stimulates Local Businesses and Saves Taxpayers

Philadelphia – Thursday, February 4, 2010 – At the Fresh Grocer, a rewards partner in historic Sullivan Progress Plaza, Mayor Michael A. Nutter officially marked the first week of Recycling Rewards collections in the Art Museum area, Fairmount, Brewerytown, parts of North Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, Kensington, Fishtown and Port Richmond and encouraged all city residents to sign up for the program.  Philadelphia Recycling Rewards will be rolled-out monthly over six months based on sanitation service areas with the entire City receiving service by July.  Philadelphia Recycling Rewards is a partnership between the City of Philadelphia, the Streets Department and RecycleBank.  The program allows residents with City provided recycling collection to earn points that are redeemed through RecycleBank for groceries, gift cards, merchandise and entertainment at hundreds of participating local and national merchants.  Philadelphia is proud to be the largest City in the United States to reward its residents for their recycling efforts.

“I am thrilled to bring Recycling Rewards, a partnership with Philadelphia’s own RecycleBank, to Philadelphia. Recycling has always paid off in several ways, but never before so directly,” said Mayor Nutter.  “Recycling has always saved the environment through diverting refuse from the land fills, saved the City money by paying less in landfill fees, and now it will save residents money by allowing them to use their rewards at area businesses.  With the opportunity to get rewarded, I expect every Philadelphian to join their neighbors in recycling.”

Residents in Philadelphia can earn hundreds of dollars worth of rewards for recycling each year.  They can redeem their rewards at many of local businesses including: Fresh Grocer, ACME, select Shop Rite Locations, Rite Aid, CVS/pharmacy, Rita’s Water Ice, Las Cazuelas, Reading Terminal Market, Second Street Pizza, London Grill, and hundreds more.  Major retailers and national brands such as Coca-Cola, Kraft, Seventh Generation, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Ruby Tuesday and Bed, Bath & Beyond also participate. Philadelphians will also have an option to donate their Recycling Rewards to environmental initiatives at local schools through the RecycleBank Green Schools Program.

Philadelphia Recycling Rewards is anticipated to bring the City’s recycling diversion rate– the amount of recyclable materials that are diverted away from landfills—to record levels.   Every ton of waste diverted from landfills currently saves the city about $70.  The program is a “pay for performance” contract and shares the savings for additional tons of recycling collected above and beyond current levels. This means RecycleBank only gets paid when the City increases recycling and reduces trash.

“Philadelphia took the initiative in 2005 to be the very first city to pilot our service and since then we have grown to service millions of people across 25 states and the UK. We are proud and excited to have the opportunity to continue to service 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, reaching and surpassing their Greenworks Philadelphia Goals.”

“We’re delighted to be part of a local environmental program that changes behavior,” said Patrick J. Burns, President and CEO of Fresh Grocer. “At The Fresh Grocer, we are dedicated to operating our stores with an ongoing commitment to the environment.  Partnering with RecycleBank and rewarding our customers for recycling certainly aligns with our mission.”

Clarena I. W. Tolson, Streets Commissioner stated, “This program not only makes the City greener by increasing recycling rates and saving the City from costly landfill fees; it puts some green back into the pockets of our local residents by giving them points redeemable at local businesses.”

The Mayor has set ambitious goals with Greenworks Philadelphia, which has recycling goals including a 20 percent diversion rate by 2011 and 25 percent by 2015.  Philadelphia Recycling Rewards powered by RecycleBank will help the City achieve and hopefully exceed those goals.

The Philadelphia Recycling Rewards roll-out schedule is as follows:

February 2010: North Philadelphia
March 2010: Lower Northeast, Frankford and Logan Sections
April 2010: West and Southwest Philadelphia
May 2010: Center City and South Philadelphia
June 2010: Northeast Philadelphia
July 2010: Northwest Philadelphia

For more information about Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Program, and to sign-up for a rewards account, please visit or call the Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Customer Affairs Unit at 1-888-769-7960.


About RecycleBank
RecycleBank® motivates people to recycle and rewards consumers for taking greener actions with points that can be redeemed from participating local and national business partners. Through collaboration and innovation, RecycleBank is helping to create a culture that encourages people to take simple steps towards greener lifestyles. With new products and services like residential recycling, product reuse, expanded e-waste recycling, responsible disposal or simply focusing on using what already exists in the world today, we believe that making greener choices shouldn’t feel at all like a trade off. It should be a trade up, and so RecycleBank rewards you every step of the way.  RecycleBank currently provides service to over one million people across the U.S. and the U.K. and has been recognized with a number of business and environmental awards, including being named as a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and as a Champion of the Earth by the United Nations Environmental Programme. RecycleBank is headquartered in New York City.  For more information, visit

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How to sign-up and participate in Philadelphia’s Recycling Reward Program:

City of Philadelphia residents can sign-up for and begin participating in Philadelphia Recycling Rewards through a few easy steps:

Visit online and click on “Get Started Now”. Individuals will complete the simple registration form to initiate a free Philadelphia Recycling Rewards household account. Residents that would prefer to sign-up over the telephone will call 1-888-769-7960 and speak to a customer service representative.

The Philadelphia Recycling Rewards stickers will be mailed to each participating residence starting in January 2010. The sticker can be recognized by recycling trucks and record if a household recycled that week. The sticker should be placed on the primary container that is used to put out recyclable materials.

When the program begins in a sanitation district, technology on the recycling truck will read that recyclable materials are being collected. Residents participating in the program will receive reward points  based upon their sanitation areas recycling  diversion rate. Bonus points will also be given for neighborhoods that significantly reduce the amount of trash that goes to the landfill.

To redeem, residents will log onto their account at to view their total Points and “shop” for the rewards that they want or can call 1-888-769-7960 and speak to a customer service representative. Online rewards will be emailed directly to residents while in store rewards will be mailed to their home within seven business days.


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