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Earning Green by Going Green

Written by AARP - The Magazine
Published: January 1, 2009

By Leslie Quander Wooldridge

The demands of recycling used to annoy Helen Baker, 68: the Cherry Hill, New Jersey, resident disliked separating products such as glass and plastics. But now that she’s rewarded for her efforts— no sorting required—she enjoys gathering her trash. “I try to put everything in recycling that belongs there,” she says. Baker isn’t alone in her new eco-enthusiasm.
Recyclebank encourages consumers to go green by offering them discounts and coupons for goods at hundreds of stores, including CVS and Home Depot. Based in New York City, the company contracts with communities across the country and give households credit for the weight of recyclables set out for curbside pickup. Residents not only reduce their carbon footprints; they can earn up to $540 in rewards annually. Participating sites report boosts in recycling, and hundreds of thousands of households will receive the service this year. Happy with the program, Baker likes the big picture: “It’s making the world a better place, and we’re going to get personal rewards as well.”

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The Coca-Cola Company, Craton Equity Partners, Generation Investment Management, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Paul Capital Investments, Physic Ventures, RRE Ventures LLC, Sigma Partners, Waste Management Inc., and Westly Group

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