In these tough economic times many people are looking for ways to shave expenses off their budgets. One tried-and-true method is to rent instead of buy. Environmentalists have long pointed out that we can also significantly reduce our impact on the planet if we borrow the things we only need occasionally.
Making new products takes a massive influx of energy and resources, from petroleum products to wood, rubber, metals, minerals and more. The fewer things we buy the less companies will make, and the more savings for all. Plus, buying less cuts packaging waste, a significant problem. Folks in cities are already used to sharing resources such as cars, washing machines and workout equipment, which is part of why urban areas tend to have lower carbon footprints than rural ones. But many of us can go further.
For example, many people find that they rarely use the expensive tools they got for Christmas, or that they bought to complete a single project. In fact, studies have shown that the average power tool is used for only about half an hour in its lifetime. Renting (or borrowing) that specialized tool when you need it can save you money, and free up space in your home or garage.