How Gifting Can Help Save the Environment

December 4, 2020
GiftYa
jason wolfe

“How dare you!” were Greta Thunberg’s confrontational words to world leaders at the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit, as she pointed out their lack of commitment to climate change measures.

Why was she so indignant? Because climate change and pollution have been a serious problem for decades, but businesses and governments have been slow, if not downright unwilling, to change. 

The numbers back up her claims: 

The global population is only growing, which means waste production will too, bringing with it more pollution, carbon emissions, and climate change. In America, we average 4.9 pounds of waste per person per day, and almost half of that is made of materials that could be recycled. Like plastics, which make up 12% of the total. 

“But,” you’re thinking, “I always recycle. Everybody does.” 

Everybody doesn’t. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that, yes, the percentage has increased from past years, but only about 35% of us are recycling today. And even what we do send to recycling centers can’t all be recycled. A lot of it ends up in landfills for many different reasons. Recycling is complicated and can’t solve our waste problems, because it’s reactive. It’s a band aid approach, not a real solution, to a bigger problem. Creating waste is the root of the issue, and something we’ve all got to address.

Our world’s environmental crisis is one of the reasons giftya was created. Did you know gift cards can’t be recycled in your curbside pickup? They’ll just be thrown out. (There are options to recycle gift cards, but they have to be sent to special centers for processing. What are the odds most people—or businesses—will do that?) And since gift cards are consistently the most popular gift, about 75 million pounds of PVC materials end up in landfills every year.

That’s why environmental agencies stress “reduce and reuse” so much. Instead of trying to reincarnate waste into a new, usable form, the better solution is to not create it (or throw it out) in the first place. At giftya, we’re proud to be part of a real solution to a larger problem. It’s one of our core values: to protect and improve the global environment. How do we do it?

The answer is simple. We take the natural desire to care for each other by giving gifts, and make a simple but powerful change to how it’s done. Instead of trying to go against the grain of our natural behavior, we’ve updated the gifting process to make it easier, funner (yeah, we know that’s not a real word), and environmentally responsible.

Giftya is the evolution of the gift card. It’s an e-gift (read “no plastics”) sent through text that can be tied directly to the recipient’s Visa or Mastercard. Sending a giftya is super easy: just download the app, choose from any merchant in the U.S., and send it to your friend or loved one through text. Oh yeah, and you get to personalize it with fun wrappers, text messages, or video greetings to let them know you’re thinking of them. And voilà! A gift they’ll love and the Earth will thank you for.

It’s just as easy to use a giftya. You get a text notification that your friend Mark sent you a giftya for the local coffeehouse you love (what a thoughtful guy). You just click on the link to open the app, tie the gift to your Visa or Mastercard, then get a credit on your card the next time you buy a latte on your way to work. OR, if you’d rather go to the mall, you can change the merchant in the app. Pretty slick, we know.

And if you’re wondering if anyone really wants gift cards, instead of a physical gift, check this out: in 2019, gift cards were the most popular wish list item for the 13th year in a row. More than half of shoppers said they would shop online… what better way to do that than with a gift card? And digital or e-gift cards are becoming more popular every year, especially now that we all want to do all the things from our phones.

So your friend or loved one is way more likely to appreciate a giftya than a physical gift, or even a plastic gift card, especially when you tell them how they can never lose or forget it. Now it’s possible to give just the right gift, with a personal touch and the ease of today’s technology… and do your part to protect the environment just by doing the gifting you were going to do anyway.

If every person and business takes one little step towards reducing, reusing, and recycling, we’ll quickly see a healthier planet and healthier people in it. With giftya, we can care for each other by caring for the environment. And in gifting, it’s the thought that counts.

Ready to try it out? Download giftya today.

Or watch our “Sending a giftya” video to see exactly how it works.

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