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Rex’s Recycling Reminders

Overcoming Recycling Fatigue in NYC

Alexie Andlauer, Liam Carr, Melissa Sever


After meeting with Sci4NY, our team knew almost immediately that we had to
tackle the issue of recycling in the city. Noticing the problem with the waste
system, production and usage of recyclable products, and the consumer's end of
things, we had to decide in what way we needed to advocate for recycling. We
chose the consumer and residential end, focusing on displaying a character that
would be the face of our campaign. Rex the Recycling Rat became the vital face
we needed to help New Yorkers through their recycling fatigue. Being a fun and
new way of advocating for mindful disposal of waste, we hope to see Rex around
the city soon.


The challenges we had to overcome were largely about working on a project
centered around New York City while not all of us were in the city. While we each
have different schedules, it was challenging finding times to come together to
work. We focused a lot on communicating with one another to make sure our
goals and deadlines were met.


After analyzing the recycling in NYC at different approaches, we discovered that
recycling fatigue was a big area where we could improve the important act of
recycling on its own. With the development of our character Rex, we concluded
that teaching people again what recycling was wouldn’t change anything, he was
going to be a fresh and fun new teacher. We delivered a video that would show
all the ways that Rex could deliver is recycling reminders and facts around the
city. With a fact and call to action basis, he would capture everyday New Yorkers
on the Subway, LinkNYC boards, and anywhere else in our everyday passing.
Overall, our creation of Rex the Recycling Rat is a fun approach to tackling the
recycling fatigue and the overall recycling problem in NYC.

Learn more about the students:

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