Internet auction site eBay is famous around the world for being a marketplace where you can buy anything from a used car to a new pair of shoes. The company has been working on its green credentials, stating on their Green Team website that they have been carbon neutral since 2007. This status, they claim, has been achieved through carbon offsetting, green and energy efficient buildings and purchasing power from alternative energy suppliers as well as generating 18% of the power required to run their San Jose North campus in California from 3248 solar panels mounted on the roof.
Not everybody is convinced that eBay can live up to their green claims however. Although eBay are in control of decisions regarding the day to day running of their business, everybody knows that the products sold on eBay have got to travel to their new homes by some means, and unless the buyer lives within walking distance, this is going to involve the burning of fossil fuels to get the items to their destination. OK, so there’s the offset that the buyer doesn’t have to get in their car to go and buy the item from the shops, and eBay is an excellent way of selling on those items you no longer need or want releasing much needed cash and recycling at the same time. But there are also a lot of businesses selling new goods so is that aspect any better than buying from any other online shop?