Umbrella Sharing: A No-Brainer For College Campuses

Today’s college kids are part of the most eco-friendly generation ever, with more favorable attitudes toward clean energy and sustainable living than any that have gone before. Millennials care where food and consumer goods come from, how purchases and consumption affect the environment, and how carbon footprints can be minimized. Millennials were also born into the digital age – we’ve always been digitally connected and we’ve grown up knowing that whatever we need, there’s probably an app for it.

This is where ‘brellaBox fits in. It’s lean, it’s green, and it’s exactly what college campuses need. Every time it rains, students pick up a cheap, crappy umbrella just to throw it away when it inevitably breaks. Worse, they just brave the rain and leave the contents of their backpacks at the mercy of the elements. This is a terrible system – it’s wasteful and inconvenient. Instead, why not rent a high-quality umbrella and return it when the sun comes out? That’s right – umbrella sharing is here.

Umbrellas Are An Environmental Disaster

We don’t think of umbrellas as being particularly offensive compared to oil spills or coal plants, but they have a surprisingly significant environmental impact. Umbrellas are made from a number of different materials, including metals, plastics, and fabrics, with the upshot that they’re generally not recyclable. When they break, there’s nowhere for them to go but in the trash. Every year, we throw away enough umbrellas to build 25 Eiffel Towers – and the Eiffel Tower is almost 1,000 feet tall.

Now, what happens to those towering piles of discarded umbrellas? They head for the solid-waste landfill. The Millennials have learned to shudder at the thought of a landfill, and rightly so – they’re the largest man-made source of methane in the US. Methane is one of the worst greenhouse gases, storing heat 23 times more effectively than carbon dioxide.

In other words, umbrella waste is bad news and we’re creating a lot of it.

They’re Also A Pain

It’s bad enough that our cheap umbrellas are contributing to global warming, but they’re also just plain inconvenient. It seems like you never have one when you need it, so you have to choose between getting drenched and shelling out for a new umbrella. Alternately, you find yourself carrying an umbrella around all day when the sun is shining because you’ve been misled by the weather report.

If you do manage to bring or buy one for a rainy day, then what do you do with it? Carry it around, sopping wet, dripping on everything in sight.

Two Birds, One Stone: Umbrella Sharing

We hate the thought of all those umbrellas piling into landfills and contributing to the global warming disaster. We also hate carrying umbrellas around with us. What’s the solution? Umbrella sharing, especially on college campuses.  8646651913_3fbe7b0082_z

It’s simple, really. Several ‘brellaBoxes are put in convenient locations around campus. When it rains, you can swipe your credit card or student ID and rent an umbrella. When you’re done, you just put it back in the box. It’s there when you need it so you never have to buy another umbrella – and you never have to send another umbrella to the landfill.

Why college campuses? Because college kids care about their environmental impact and about convenience – the two biggest perks umbrella sharing offers. Plus, college students are typically toting around laptops and those brutally expensive textbooks, which don’t respond well to getting wet.

Penn State Gets It

Some schools are already on board. For example, Penn State has already adopted ‘brellaBox to help keep its students (and their textbooks) out of the rain. They’re the first Big Ten school to adopt umbrella sharing, with boxes in the library and the HUB for easy access. Penn State students can rent an umbrella with a student ID and it’s free unless the umbrella is not returned or is returned late.

Stay dry, Penn State!

Are You Ready?

We know you’re sick of getting caught in the rain (although we’re pretty sure piña coladas hold up). If you’re ready to knock out some of that landfill waste and keep those textbooks dry with umbrella sharing, contact us today to learn about bringing ‘brellaBox to your campus. All the cool kids are doing it.


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Molly Bachechi


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