Yahoo teams with Freecycle to turn junk into treasure

by parul8ue on Apr 23, 2008      Category: Environment Tags: waste reuse yahoo freecycle

Yahoo has unveiled an Earth Day initiative to divert mountains of landfill trash, using the Internet to match people unloading "junk" with those that want the stuff.

Yahoo is hoping to convince its 500 million users worldwide to join Freecycle.org, a nonprofit devoted to finding new homes for just about anything people are getting rid of.

"Our mission is keeping things out of landfills," said Deron Beal, who started Freecycle in 2003 and is its lone staff member.

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parul8ue's picture

Although freecycle is a group exclusively for giving away things people don't want any more for free, there have been other groups doing effectively the same thing (free section on craigslist).

One think to ponder about is when freecycling makes sense. might not be very prudent (environmentally too!) to drive across town to pick up a bottle of hair dye or a box of chocolates!

nitiniitk's picture

Absolutely, one needs to be careful in deciding when it makes sense instead of blindly freecycling everything. The success of the model depends on its widescale adoption, i.e. if you can find stuff nearby. I think they are headed in the right direction, as the article mentions "People post or email about what they are seeking to get or give in their Freecycle groups, which are broken down by geography so members are basically communicating with neighbors."
Not sure about total junk, but the stuff that is useless for one and usable for others, can be efficiently exchanged between neighbors. We don't even need to look at it from a social work perspective, it makes economic sense if can be done at large scale.

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