ATLANTA, GA, Apr. 18, 2012 -- In celebration of Earth Month, Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO) is partnering with River Network to donate more than 1,000 syrup drums for reuse as rain barrels in communities all across the country.
Rain barrels capture rainwater and help reduce stormwater pollution. Sediment that travels into rivers and streams as a result of stormwater runoff can directly impact water quality. By capturing water when it rains, these rain barrels eliminate some of that runoff, reducing its impact. Water can then be saved until needed during dry periods to water plants, wash cars and for other non-drinking water needs. Not only does this reduce water usage, it also saves money.
"The fact that Coca-Cola is donating so many rain barrels on such a broad cross-country scale makes this program truly unparalleled in scope or impact," said Matt Burke, Director of Corporate and Community Engagement, River Network. "We're thrilled to partner with Coca-Cola to make a meaningful impact for healthy water resources around the country."
To date, more than 80 organizations in the U.S. have benefitted from Coca-Cola's rain barrel donation program. These rain barrels have replenished an estimated 100 million gallons of water since 2008.
With these 1,000 new donations, Coca-Cola will have provided more than 22,000 syrup drums to be used as rain barrels all across the country since 2008. The new rain barrels will help replenish an estimated 60 million gallons of water each year. That is enough to fill 100 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
"Rain barrels are a tangible and effective way to inspire change to preserve our water resources," said Jon Radtke, Water Resources Director for Coca-Cola Refreshments. "Working with our local partners, we can encourage communities to save water drop by drop, barrel by barrel, and replenish a significant amount of water back into nature."
The Company's syrup drum donations for Earth Day kicked off earlier this month with local events throughout the U.S., including an art rain barrel auction to benefit charity and rain barrel-making workshops with local organizations. Coca-Cola associates are getting into the act as well by volunteering in local community Earth Month activities and community cleanup projects.
Coca-Cola supports water replenishment projects throughout the world in an effort to meet its goal to return to nature an amount of water equivalent to what the Company uses in all of its products and their production by 2020. The Company is reducing the amount of water it uses, recycling the water used in its operations and replenishing water to communities and nature.
Water stewardship is one of seven focus areas that make up Coca-Cola's Live Positively(R) platform, the Company's commitment to making a positive difference in the world by growing business in economically, environmentally and socially sustainable ways. For more information on Live Positively, visit www.thecoca-colacompany.com/citizenship/index.html .About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, our Company's portfolio features 15 billion dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of more than 1.7 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system employees. For more information, please visit www.thecoca-colacompany.com or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo.About River Network
For more than twenty years, River Network has empowered and united people and communities to protect and restore rivers and other waters that sustain the health of our country. We envision a future when every person knows their watershed and is an active caretaker of their local river, lake, stream or bay. We work for the day when all people, fish and wildlife have access to clean plentiful water. Our headquarter staff in Portland, OR and field staff in Vermont, Maryland, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Utah and Idaho work closely with thousands of watershed protection groups from coast to coast -- building the capacity of state and local groups, assisting people grappling with water and environmental health problems, protecting habitat for fish and wildlife, developing blue cities and reducing our country's use of water and energy. To learn more about River Network, visit www.rivernetwork.org .