LEXINGTON, Ky. – As part of AAA’s green initiatives, and in honor of Earth Day (April 22) and National Arbor Day (April 30), the auto club will once again fund tree plantings for the responsible recycling of old car batteries when a new one is replaced by AAA’s Emergency Roadside Service or at a AAA | Bob Sumerel Tire & Service retail location, from April 19 through May 2.
Additionally, customers who visit any AAA retail store or AAA | Bob Sumerel Tire & Service location within AAA’s territory now through May 19 can also support a tree planting with a donation of $1 or more. All trees will be planted in National Forests through the Arbor Day Foundation, a non-profit conservation and education organization. For store locations, visit AAA.com/Locations.
While the Batteries for Trees program was on hiatus last year due to COVID-19, the 2019 initiative resulted in AAA supporting the planting of 6,000 trees, an increase of 36% from the 4,400 tree plantings in 2018.
This year’s program will expand to include tree plantings in recognition of AAA Associates for their green activities and volunteerism efforts throughout the month of April. With this additional engagement, AAA’s tree planting goal for this year’s effort increases to 8,000 from the previous 6,000 goal. Since 2011, AAA has contributed to the planting of nearly 20,000 trees.
“AAA and our Associates recognize the environmental importance in recycling used car batteries and in engaging in green practices,” said Amber Zionkowski, Corporate Citizenship Manager. “We are proud of these efforts that will help restore our earth, including the contribution to the greening of America through the planting of trees.”
Nearly 100% of a car battery can be recycled due to its three major components―lead, plastic, and sulfuric acid―which can be safely recycled. Recycling reduces toxic waste and lessens the demand for original materials required for new products. AAA car battery supplier, Battery Service Solutions, collects and recycles all of the club’s spent batteries, and is a partner in this year’s Batteries for Trees campaign.
During 2020, battery-related issues were one of the key breakdown challenges for drivers, as their vehicles sat idle at home for long periods of time due to the pandemic. AAA replaced and recycled well over 7,000 car batteries in Kentucky last year, a 3% increase over 2019.
This year, as more drivers are starting up their engines, as a result of increased vaccinations, decreased pandemic restrictions, and now the warmer weather, car battery-related issues continue to be a top breakdown issue. For the first quarter of 2021, AAA has replaced and recycled more than 1,900 car batteries in the Bluegrass region, an increase of nearly 28 percent over the same quarter in 2020.
For those motorists with battery-related issues who do not want to leave their home during the pandemic, AAA’s Mobile Battery Service can travel to a member’s location to test their batteries, replace those that are spent and recycle the old battery for them. AAA’s roadside service drivers engage in COVID-19 safety measures while assisting drivers. AAA Members can call 1-800-AAA-HELP (800-222-4357) for AAA’s Mobile Battery Service or visit AAA.com/Battery.
Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
The auto club recognizes the need of electric vehicle owners for access to vehicle charging stations when on the road, and has done its part to help contribute to the availability of EV charging stations.
In December 2014, AAA’s first electric vehicle charging station opened in Kentucky at the AAA|Bob Sumerel Tire and Service location in Fort Wright. AAA Club Alliance has installed 19 charging stations at their stores across their footprint, including its Kentucky location. These electric vehicle charging stations are a free, 24-hour service with unlimited charging for AAA Members and the general public.
Electric vehicle drivers can find other charging locations throughout the country through AAA’s TripTik Planner feature that can be found on the AAA Mobile app or at AAA.com/TripTik. AAA offers additional resources and information to assist electric vehicle owners and educate consumers about electric vehicles at AAA Exchange.
AAA provides automotive, travel, and insurance services to more than 62 million members nationwide and 650,000 in Kentucky. AAA is a non-stock, membership corporation working on behalf of motorists.