- Ride-booking service Uber in Beirut has partnered with Live Love Beirut and Advanced Car Rental to collect recyclable waste for free. All material will be handed over to sustainability company arcenciel for recycling.
- Here's how it works: Beirut residents can open the Uber app from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. through Aug. 4, select the UberRecycle option, and a van will stop by to pick up recycling in sealed bags — blue for plastic, black for paper, and pink for metal. After the promotion ends, Uber encourages residents to continue recycling with arcenciel.
- The effort is in response to a spreading crisis that has left trash piled up in cities across Lebanon, which has been without a president for 14 months.
Technology and trash are coming together. In this case, Uber is going the beyond apps that provide trash and recycling pickup schedules by providing on-demand pickup — at least in one desperate city for a limited time.
If it works, what is the potential for expanding such a program? And could it work in the U.S.?
On-demand pickup would likely be desirable for people who live in areas that don't have municipal recycling. Therefore, the prospect of UberRECYCLING may come as a threat to existing recycling haulers. Due to the extreme convenience that on-demand recycling collection would offer its customers, existing services may want to consider if it's economically feasible to offer a similar service — or to possible partner with Uber.