Efforts to improve garbage collection and decrease littering aren’t anything new, but how they take place differs. There’s the Enevo One Collect smart sensor, for example, that allows for more efficient trash collection, and the ECan, which gives people an incentive to pick up and throw away trash.
The ECan is a sensor-equipped garbage can that detects when trash is placed inside, offering a barcode scanner to scan the items being tossed (assuming there’s a barcode to scan), a display for the individual disposing of the trash to take credit for the disposal, and solar panels to keep the whole thing running.
The incentive part involves a new cryptocurrency similar in nature to Bitcoin (though not presently worth anything): Emrals. Should the program take off, the idea is that users can throw away trash, get Emrals in exchange, and be rewarded by trading in the digital monies for some product or cash.
Those participating can compete with each other in a region, with the top users being displayed on the cans’ displays. There are presently three cans in Brooklyn, but the folks behind the initiative want to see the program roll out across the globe.