Get Some Green When You Go Green

By Brooke Drake, April 23, 2010, Green

With more and more businesses going green these days, I found one in particular that is taking it to a whole new level. This company is called RecycleBank, and just like its name sounds, they reward their customers for recycling.

RecycleBank started back in 2005 with the idea to financially reward households for the amount that they recycle. Today, they are looking to expand their services to financially reward people for additional green actions that include using solar and wind power, using water efficiently, riding public transportation, and buying products that are manufactured from recycled content.

So how does the process work? Well, it looks easy enough.  The amount a household recycles (which is a range of items, not just trash)  is converted to RecycleBank points, which are deposited into that household’s account each time there is a recycle pick-up. Members then can use their points from their account to redeem rewards of their choice.  You can click on this link to see a list of the possible rewards. In case you were wondering, your points are gathered by a recycling truck that identifies the correct home and account by a unique ID tag that’s placed on a home’s recycling cart.

Although this was the first time that I had heard about RecycleBank, it doesn’t mean that no one else has because they actually serve over one million people in 20 states across the U.S. (and are getting ready to launch in Europe). This company was even selected as Champion of the Earth by the United Nations Environment Program – where have I been?

If this sounds like something you are interested in, on their website they encourage you to contact your local government or recycling provider about starting this program in your area. They even provide sample letters as a guide to mail. For more information on this, go to the RecycleBank page and scroll down to the bottom of the page. There are two downloadable PDFs for you to view.

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