Collection: Recycling superheroes

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Main Research Source
What have we learnt?

Some notes:

Helmeted 3R’s – It’s not clear to me why an energy efficiency and conservation company would use the 3R’s as their main logo, but they did. I like the name TIO “Turn It Off” though.

3Rs plus refuse – Refuse is rarely included in the recycling lineup

Repair – Robotic Emergency Protocol Actualizing Intelligent Repairman – this one is funny and I rarely come across repair making it into the 5R’s

Wastewisekids – I include this because I realised that I haven’t seen any pictorial references to the waste hierarchy

RecyclaBuddies ‘Culturally sensitive’ Department of Sanitation leaflet – not sure what to think about this one

The Wicked witch of the Waste is a good one! I haven’t seen much mention of villains intil now.

3R’s Rethink – It was interesting to see the development of Maria-Christina Gantt’s characters. Reduce is a bin with tape measure bringing in waist, Reuse is a handyman and Recycle is the symbol and he juggles, which seems appropriate.

Zero Waste and the 4Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rot) haven’t got a catchy name, but the build of the characters makes you look more closely at their features.

The League of 4Rs Action Heroes is probably the best set of characters I’ve found and they seem well developed and used in Alameda County as part of various programmes. They have great descriptions and link through to loads of resources. In this document they have aliases  (I like this level of detail);

  • Super Reducer’s Garbologist name is Redford
  • Professor Reuse’s Garbologist name is RiRi
  • The Recycler’s Garbologist name is Reese
  • Rot Girl’s Garbologist name is Rhoda

I wasn’t able to find much out about the Busch Systems superhero team – they are no longer in use. They appear to be for home users – kitchen caddy, big blue bin and presumably general advice on recycling.


  • Recycling Tips for Kids | How to Reduce Waste at Home KiwiCo
    I liked this article, it made me imagine super hero roles for family members

    • Grocery Store Scavenger
    • Recycling Resource
    • Energy Vampire Slayer
    • Switch Master
    • Water Warrior
    • First In First Out (FIFO)
    • Upcycle Used & Unwanted Items
  • Zero Heroes is a Waste Reduction programme by Planet Protector Academy
    • The Garbage Problem
    • Operation Love Food, Hate Waste (food waste)
    • Operation Food Scraps (organics recycling)
    • Operation Waste-Free Lunch
    • Operation Buy Smart (sustainable consumption)
    • Operation Green Cycle (design thinking)
  •  Recycling Mascots We Love is a pinterest collection by Recycle Scene mostly of cartoon recycling bins
  • Recycle Guys have done the graphics for lots of recycling campaigns
  • There are characters representing just Food Waste, Compost or Soils, but I haven’t included them here.