Forget Tokens: Commuters Can Now Pay Subway Fare By Recycling


Beijing has gotten plenty of bad press for its environmental crisis. The city was so polluted in January that officials created a fake sun billboard when the real one was obscured. But a successful recycling project in the city proves that residents are pretty gung ho about environmental issues, especially when they get free subway fare or mobile phone minutes in exchange for recycling.

Chinese recycling company Incom first set up 10 of the machines, which resemble a typical vending machine in a Beijing subway station, back in 2012, reports Recycling Today. The machines allow commuters to insert a plastic soda or water bottle in exchange for a transit pass or mobile phone credit. The machine has a sensor that is able to scan each bottle and determine how much it’s worth. Commuters can get 5 to 15 cents per bottle.

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