7 Ways to Make Money by Going Green

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Tip #6: Whether you're taking a cross-country road trip or commuting to work, carpooling can save on carbon emissions (and make you hundreds of dollars each month!). Photo: Flickr/timo_w2s

5. Starting an Etsy shop

Are you always churning out loads of creative crafts to give away as presents to friends and family? If your crafts closet is getting full and your mom already owns four of your oh-so-lovely mason jar candle holders, why not make a little extra cash with your artistic creativity?

Etsy allows everyday crafters to open online stores and sell their handmade goods, vintage items and crafts supplies right from their living rooms.

Typically, rent and overhead costs for a small shop can reach hundreds of thousands of dollars. But you can register your Etsy shop for free, and it will only cost you 20 cents to list an item for up to four months. When your item sells, you'll pay a 3.5 percent transaction fee on the final sale price and the rest is yours!

You can sell as many or as few items in your shop as you'd like. If you're worried you may not have the time to keep a shop fully stocked, you can also create an account with multiple users and collaborate with crafty friends to cash in on your upcycling genius.

READ: 5 Unbelievable Recycled Crafts

6. Carpooling

We all know that carpooling is a great way to reduce air pollution, save money and relieve the stress of your commute. But did you know you could make money from it?

Sites like Zimride allow you to sell empty seats in your car - whether it's your daily commute or a cross-country road trip. The amount charged by the driver covers the cost of gas and travel, meaning you can take your trips for less by filling all your empty seats.

You can also sign up for GoLoco, which allows you to split the cost of your ride between all passengers evenly based on a 50 cents-per-mile estimate. So, if you're headed on a 300-mile road trip, you could save $100 on gas by sharing your ride with two other people. Not too shabby!

READ: A Greenie's Guide to the Open Road

7. Recycling curbside

You already toss cans, bottles and other recyclables into your curbside bin each week. So, why not get paid for it? Recyclebank will give you points for each item you recycle, which can be redeemed for discounts and deals at all your favorite stores and online retailers.

So, how does it work? Recyclebank partners with with waste haulers across the country to find out how much recyclable material was collected and converts the total into Recyclebank Points, which are distributed amongst all recyclers in the community. So, the more you and your neighbors recycle, the more everyone gets paid!

But Recyclebank isn't just for your curbside bin. You can also earn points for other green actions, including saving energy at home, getting your postal mail online and supporting environmental initiatives. And, in case you haven't heard, you can also collect Recyclebank points from reading articles here on Earth911. Just click the link at the bottom of each story to get your points!

READ: Donate Your Recyclebank Points to Schools

Homepage Image: Alexandra Vietti, Earth911

Mary Mazzoni

Based in the Phoenix metro area, Mary is a lifelong vegetarian and enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, biking and relaxing in the park. When she’s not outside, she’s probably watching baseball. She is a former assistant editor for Earth911.