Pepsi and the nation’s capital have teamed up to put 363 new “Dream Machine” recycling kiosks in Washington, D.C., offering customers unique rewards like coupons for Dominos, Johnny Rockets, and Marriott hotels in exchange for their recyclables. There’s no doubt the machines will improve the city’s recycling rates (more drop-off points = more recycling, with or without the rewards), but their choice in rewards partners has us perplexed: Couldn’t they pick businesses and products that have their own green initiatives?
To earn rewards, customers simply dump their plastic, glass, and paper into the machine and wait for it to calculate how much it’s all worth; later, customers can choose from a rewards catalog at Greenopolis.com. The program is also installing several regular recycling bins that don’t offer rewards (but are plastered with Pepsi’s logo).
Reward options include everything from restaurant vouchers to concert tickets, but among the most-advertised reward partners are big food chains like Domino’s and Arby’s, and Marriott hotels, none of which are known for being eco-minded businesses. (They’re not known for being healthy, either, but we’ll let Ms. Obama and her Get Fit! posse handle that contradiction.) Pepsi’s bins will definitely get D.C. residents recycling more, but will they encourage them to value eco-conscious businesses? We’re not so sure.
via Fast Company