A $1.1 million gift from Coca-Cola Co. announced Wednesday will help jumpstart the effort. This summer, the National Park Service and its fundraising partners will study the waste generated on the mall to design a permanent recycling program.
The National Mall generates three to four tons of trash on an average day, nearly all of which goes straight to landfills, Park Service officials said. The site draws about 25 million visitors each year.
The agency will operate and grow the recycling program to make it a model for the country, Acting National Park Service Director Dan Wenk said.