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Think Green

Entrepreneurs are turning environmental problems into opportunities.

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This story appears in the March 2006 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Walk past a BigBelly trash can on the street, and you might notimmediately notice a difference between it and a typical garbagereceptacle. Wait around a while, though, and you'll notice.

The BigBelly works just like any other public trash can, only ituses solar energy to automatically compress trash when the can getstoo full, thus reducing the volume of waste. "Most important,it reduces the collection frequency," notes BigBelly inventorJames Poss, who counts the borough of Queens in New York City andthe U.S. Forest Service among his clients. That means fewerdiesel-burning garbage trucks on the road--and a drastic decreasein the estimated 1 billion gallons of fuel burned by garbage trucksevery year.

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