Two new customer buy back programs aim to reduce the amount of e-waste pouring into landfills every day. Both ecoNEW and TechForward pay consumers for their old electronics equipment hoping to encourage new purchases and to keep these products, many of which contain harmful chemicals, out of our landfills. The reclaimed electronics will then be refurbished and sold online, or broken up into salvage parts.
TechForward provides a guaranteed buy back plan, allowing you to purchase a plan when you buy your product that the point of sale or afterwards via their website. The plans range from just a few dollars to over $100 depending on the item and they offer you the ability to lock-in guaranteed buy back prices that you will be able to recoup for your item in after 3 mos, 6 mos, 1 year, 2years... When you do want to return you item they provide you with a prepaid shipping box and once they receive the returned item, they issue you a check or gift card for the pre-determined buy back amount. Tech Forward Guarantees that your item will either be reused or disposed of in an "Environmentally Friendly Way".
EcoNEW will be coming to select retailers this spring is being run by N.E.W. Customer Service Companies, the group that provides extended warranty services to stores like Best Buy and Wal-Mart. Under this program, consumers will be able to return any electronics product to participating retailers, regardless of where they originally purchased them. In exchange ecoNEW will issue store credit gift cards for predetermined amounts based on the type, age and condition of the electronics.
Basically the motivation behind these companies is to encourage consumer to upgrade resulting in more consumption, which many criticize, however, if the end result is less harmful electronics ending up in a landfill, I think Mother Nature will be smiling.