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How To Make Your Business More Sustainable: Put it on Wheels!

| Friday March 5th, 2010 | 3 Comments

ban-startup-friday

For most people without a washer and dryer, there are three choices: carry your dirty stuff to the local laundromat, drive if it’s too much to carry, or pay someone to pickup and deliver it. For all of these, there are both a business and an environmental opportunity: Bikes.

Yes, as mentioned recently in Springwise, Argentina based Laundry Company has taken advantage of the increasing ability of bikes to carry larger loads, and is now offering a service that picks your laundry up and drops it off, all via a 3 wheel cargo bike (or old fashioned foot power) at no extra charge.

It’s not just a gimmick. Laundry Company provides a reusable fabric based laundry bag and its machines and detergent are designed to be lower impact, an energy savings of 40 percent. The company also neutralizes it carbon footprint via tree planting.

All admirable, but what other kind of businesses can likewise mobilize their operations? In urban environments, where riding a bike or otherwise getting cars off the road can have a tangible environmental benefit, speed up operations, and offer a unique marketing platform, this is something to consider.

Netherlands-based Vrachtfiets has created the next step: Two-people powered large capacity cargo bikes that will soon bolstered by a solar electric assist. Here the possibilities increase: Local, self serve house moving; large item courier service; a pedicab, able to carry more then two people, and skipping the disproportionately heavy emissions of motorized tuk-tuks.  Mobile catering?

Readers: Take a look at these bikes. How could your business, or others, make use of these?

Paul Smith is a sustainable business innovator, the founder of GreenSmith Consulting, and has an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco. He creates interest in, conversations around, and business for green (and greening) companies, via social media.


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  • greggzuk

    Local Organic Logistics in NYC: revrickshaws.com

  • http://twitter.com/markmayhew mark

    “sustainable business innovator”? good term, it's the first time I've seen it used.

  • http://twitter.com/markmayhew mark

    “sustainable business innovator”? good term, it's the first time I've seen it used.