The Slovakia-based firm TrashOut is letting environmentally minded consumers take matters into their own hands by reporting illegal dumping activities. Consumer-generated waste is a huge environmental problem -- according to TrashOut, our daily plastic waste weighs more than three Empire State Buildings! -- and illegal dumping is an activity that often goes unreported, which means the magnitude of the problem has yet to be fully grasped.
TrashOut, a free mobile app, aims to change this by rewarding consumers with badges for taking steps to report illegal dumping. When they see this happening, users just have to snap a photo, provide a comment and submit them via the app. The activity will appear on TrashOut's 'TrashMap,' which can be viewed on its website. Further, users are encouraged to report the dumping to local authorities to get the trash cleaned up or organize a clean-up themselves, which earns them the best badge of all for their commitment and effort.