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protect our environmentAs a website we run off a server probably kept in a large databank somewhere. Servers do have a hefty carbon footprint, so it’s a bit strange for us to be preaching about eco-consciousness. But hey, we have to get the word out.

And the word is that although the web is contributing something to global warming, it’s also the loudest bugle playing in support of it. Even Greenpeace has a website after all. But this post is not about demerits of technology, but the meritorious ways it can be put to use for the environment. One way is to promote recycling or reusing stuff like electronic gizmos instead of making them fodder for landfills or a rag pickers livelihood.

If your eco-conscience starts to prick, then head out to any of these ten web resources. They can lend a green hand to help you recycle or reuse old stuff and protect our environment.

Story of Stuff

protect our environment

Let’s start by puncturing our consumerist grandstanding by some scenes for thought. For instance, The Story of Electronics is a voice against the electronics industry’s “˜design for the dump’ mentality and advocates product take backs to spur companies to make less toxic, more easily recyclable and longer lasting products. The educational clip asks the community to petition companies for responsible recycling.

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eCycler

If you give away stuff, then this site can be of help because it connects you with others who may be willing to take them. So, you can extend any stuff’s appointed date with the landfill by listing all your items and giving them away to others in your local area. You can also participate by picking up stuff and selling them to recycling plants for cash. Going green takes on a different meaning! (See our directory mention).

Freecycle

Freecycle is a large mailing list with 7,603,875 members around the world. The not-for-profit group aims to connect givers with receivers via local groups. You can join one in your area and see the items that are being given away. You can mail across your own stuff.

Recycle Bank

ways to protect the environment

Recycle Bank follows the principle of 3 R’s – Recycle, Redeem, and Reward. It rewards households for recycling stuff by gifting RecycleBank Points that can be used to shop at over 1,500 local and national businesses. Points are earned according to the material that gets recycled. Recycle Bank collaborates with the local municipalities on one hand and retailers on the other. According to Wikipedia, Recycle Bank is in 125,000 households in the United States in over 35 municipalities (the UK has a separate login site).

Call 2 Recycle

ways to protect the environment

Cell phones and batteries get dumped by the dozen every day. They not only consume landfills but the compounds used in their manufacture are a long term source of toxicity. Call2Recycle tries to lessen the impact as the only free rechargeable battery and cell phone collection program in North America. The program is run by a non-profit. The program covers 30,000 collection sites in the U.S. and Canada where you can drop off any cell phone with or without batteries.

Recycle Now

ways to protect the environment

This is a UK based website that seeks to promote recycling through information and promotion. You can educate yourself by watching videos on how some household stuff is recycled. Find out if certain products can be recycled easily; and where. Then a small section promotes learning about recycling at school.

Gigoit

protect the environment

The name stands for “˜Garbage In, Garbage Out’. The site covers the US, Canada, and UK in its reuse and recycling efforts. There’s a small search box which is locates reusable stuff people may be willing to give away. You can specify the distance and the search for the stuff. Similarly you can list your own stuff and save it from reaching the landfills. Gigoit distributes all sorts of reusable items.

Selling Bin

protect the environment

You can tap into a network of recyclers and sell your old stuff via a buyback offer by these retailers. Electronics to things like books, movies, and even jewelry are covered. The idea is simple – instead of one recycler, you have many who email you a buyback offer after you send in an email with the product details. The reply lets you know the offer and shipping information.

Take My Mac

protect the environment

An Apple gizmo is a lifestyle device and it’s safe to say that when the latest version comes out, you wouldn’t be caught with one that’s a couple of generations old. Takemymac.com takes back your old Apple device in any condition and even pays you for it. If it is of no use, then the service recycles it for you for free. They even offer to wipe the data securely from your device. The site also has a rewards program if you refer others. This service is for the US only.

Greener One

protect our environment

The product information web service helps out by providing a green index for lots of products on its roster. As a user you can also contribute to the knowledge bank. The green index looks at factors like – are the materials used harmful to the environment? What kind and how much waste is created in making the product? Can the product be recycled? Does the manufacturer have a recycling program? Is the product bio-degradable?, etc. Consumers can make informed decisions and decide on reuse or recycling or not even buy an environmentally sensitive product in the first place.

The sheer numbers of web resources that talk about recycling, reusing, and environmental safety prove that the green movement is well and truly on. Eco apps like these and many more that you will find in our directory are setting the pace. We have to give it just a push more. Would you agree on the virtues of recycling to protect our environment?

Image: Shutterstock

  1. Ian Moise
    November 30, 2010 at 5:20 am

    Saikat,

    Thought you might also be interested in ReUse Connection (www.reuseconnection), a site in beta phase but with over 40,000 fans on FB (http://www.facebook.com/reuseconnecti... This site is the step before exchange - people sharing and learning how to reuse items and materials. Cheers, Ian Moise (imoise@reuseconnection.com)

  2. Ian Moise
    November 30, 2010 at 4:20 am

    Saikat,

    Thought you might also be interested in ReUse Connection (www.reuseconnection), a site in beta phase but with over 40,000 fans on FB (www.facebook.com/reuseconnection). This site is the step before exchange - people sharing and learning how to reuse items and materials. Cheers, Ian Moise (imoise@reuseconnection.com)

  3. David
    November 25, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    Craigslist should be at the top, whenever I am dumping a large item, I post a "curb alert". I add a photo and tell folks it's at the curb,'come and get it. Usually it's gone within 20 minutes.

  4. Esagar
    November 25, 2010 at 1:13 pm

    Take My Mac is one of the best I've used! I highly recommend them. You can't go wrong when you have people who are experienced with electronics as specific as Apple. They're honest, fair, and really friendly. It's worth the experience.

    • Saikat Basu
      November 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm

      Hey thanks for the recommendation. It's great to have a first hand one from someone who has used the service.

      • Anonymous
        November 25, 2010 at 11:28 pm

        You're welcome! They're a great group of people to deal with. I've gone to them twice and have had an excellent experience all the way through.

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