ABC's of Recycling,

K is for Keys

Oct 24 2022

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Little things can create big change.

Did you know that it’s possible to recycle something as simple as a key?

Yes! Those old house keys rattling around in the kitchen junk drawer, spare keys from your first car, and mystery luggage keys piled in a baggie are all worth recycling.

SCARCE Volunteer Ron hard at work, sorting keys.

Keys are most often made of aluminum, steel, or brass. The metal used in keys is valuable! Recycling metals, rather than manufacturing them from new ore, saves energy, prevents pollution, and reduces your carbon footprint.

SCARCE began a special collection for keys two decades ago. Schools and other groups gather keys and bring them to SCARCE, where volunteers sort them by metal type and then deliver the keys to a metal recycling facility. Over the years, SCARCE’s Keys for Conservation program has kept thousands of pounds of metal out of landfills.

Sounds good, right?

But keys are such small things. Can recycling keys really make a difference?

Absolutely! It’s a big habit change that starts with small steps.

Recycling a key reminds us to consider the value of everything we use. It reinforces the idea of the circular economy, where everything is designed to be repaired, reused, and recycled — and little to nothing is wasted. It can also help set up the habit of sorting things for special collections (things like holiday lights, plastic bread tags, bikes or bike parts), instead of simply tossing them in the trash. Taking the time to sort materials yields financial savings as well as environmental benefits.

Little things can lead to big changes — and your participation is the key to protecting our planet!

Are You Ready To Do Your Part?

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