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Going Green: The Ecological Impact of Buying Used Tablets vs. New Tablets


Tablets Enter the Tech Market

Tablets, being the newest up-and-comer tech toys on the digital landscape (well, yes, they’ve been out awhile now, but compared to mobile phones and laptops…), have similarly become one of the newest gadgets piling on as an increasingly major contributor to e-waste. As new tablets (and updated versions of established models) continue to be released on a regular basis, their new and improved technologies make each successive generation more useable and desirable to consumers, so people are updating their gadgets and dumping their old ones at an accelerating pace.

Unlike laptops and desktop computers, it is not easy to add updated chips, more RAM, or other new components to upgrade your tablet to keep up with new technologies, so more and more people simply buy new tablets rather than updating an old one. Older generation tablets are being thrown out, adding to the girth of landfills.

So when buying a tablet, how can an environmentally-conscious consumer choose the option that will have the least ecological impact?

Tablets and the Impact on Electronic Waste

In 2010, an estimated 6 million tons of electronic waste were produced. That number is expected to grow to 25 million tons by 2025. Like many other electronic items, tablets are not easily recyclable, as they contain numerous components (such as toxic metals) that make them hazardous to the environment when stripped down or tossed into landfills.

One of the best ways for consumers to go green is by reducing the number of tablets that enter market. This can be done in two ways: first, they can purchase used tablets when possible, and second, they can shop for tablets smartly to extend the amount of time they use and keep the tablets they purchase.

Determining What You Need in a Tablet

One of the best ways to start on the path of an environmentally sound purchase is to consider how much you really need your tablet to do. A person who will use a tablet for just basic uses – e.g., internet access, email, and a few standard apps – can do so with a less-powerful model than those who require a higher-powered device with greater capacities for gaming, media, work applications, or other processor-straining functions.

When in doubt, go for less. The temptation typically is to buy more than one needs, which, while ego-satisfying, often ends up with a consumer buying a more expensive device with far more capability than they need. Plus, not only can you do yourself and the environment a favor by buying based on your true needs, but in many cases you can be eco-friendly (and wallet-friendly) by purchasing a used device.

Buying the Best Used Tablet

When buying a used device, there are things shoppers can keep in mind to make the most of their purchases. Remember that tablets have a tendency to become slower over time – a fact that has not been remedied with newer generations of tablet devices. For most buyers, the best option is to purchase a used device that is under two years old. Many sellers offer refurbished tablets that function just as well as brand new devices, so they can be a good option for those who don’t necessarily need the latest and greatest in tablet tech but want to ensure they receive a device with a lengthy lifespan.

Should I Buy a New Tablet?

For many buyers, there are plenty of reasons why purchasing a new device may be the most environmentally sound option. Those who require more functionality from their tablet may be better served by purchasing one that will last them for longer than a few months or a year, thus keeping it from adding to the stack in a landfill.

Another great option is the “phablet,” a mobile phone between the size of the typical tablet and a smartphone that can replace both items in terms of usability.

Recycling Old Tablets

By shopping smart, consumers can reduce their environmental impact while still enjoying the latest offerings technology has to offer. For example, by purchasing a used tablet that is only one or two generations old, a buyer can get all the advanced technology they need while keeping if from going to a landfill.

Another way to ensure a greener outcome is to sell your older devices when replacing them rather than throwing them away or banishing them to a closet. Additionally, there are plenty of recycling programs that refurbish electronic items like tablets, so finding and utilizing a local electronic recycling program can be a good option for green-conscious consumers.

Categories:Go Green!

New Categories in Pets (& Elsewhere)

Iguana riding an ebike with an aquarium in tow

As of this week, we have added 3 new categories in our pets section. No longer will ferrets, rabbits, and gerbils be intermingled with fish for sale and snakes; Fish, Reptiles & Amphibians, and Small Animals each have their own devoted categories. As with our other pet sections, you will have the ability to refine results to only show ads from shelters, breeders, or private individuals looking to rehome, depending on your preferences.

When looking to bring a new pet into your family, most people have very specific requirements on what type of animal based on what type of pet would fit into their lives (as well they should). With these changes, it will be easier to connect with communities of like-minded pet owners to find the best home for more pets.

We have also rolled out a new category for ebikes (under the bikes category, not motorcycles), and one for Nintendo Wii U consoles and games. We’ve got more great categories that will be rolled out soon, so keep an eye on your local Kijiji, and tweet us @Kijiji with suggestions for categories you would like to see!

Love Iguanas? Check out our brand new Reptile & Amphibian section!

Buying Green: The Ecological Impact of Buying Used Furniture Vs. New

Making an Environmentally Sound Decision

Whether in search of essential, functional, or decorative pieces for the home, determining the ecological impact of any furniture can be a tremendous undertaking. There are many things to take into consideration, from the construction of furniture pieces – including the materials they are crafted from – to aspects of furniture production such as sourcing and shipping. When attempting to make an environmentally sound decision for purchasing furniture items, even more factors come into play.

Carbon Footprint

The most obvious difference between new and used furniture is the carbon footprint of each. The footprint of brand new furniture pieces begins with the process of cutting down the trees to make the product (if it is a wood product) and continues on through the manufacturing, shipping, and storage processes. On average, the overall cost of new furniture equates to about 125 tons of CO2 for every 100 rooms outfitted with new furniture. On the other end of the spectrum, less than two tons of CO2 may be produced in the acquisition of used furniture for a space, even when accounting for processes such as shipping and refinishing of the item if necessary.

Sustainable Materials

One of the best ways to start making environmentally sound choices is to choose those made with sustainable materials such as teak or bamboo furniture. Other options such as sustainable and fast-growing hardwoods such as walnut and hickory can make a great addition to any room.

It is true that buying used furniture ensures that no new trees are cut down for the purposes of crafting a new furniture item. You can further decrease the furniture’s overall environmental impact by using woods certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). The FSC Certification ensures that companies don’t use environmentally harmful methods such as clear cutting in the production of the furniture item.

It also is important to remember that many manufacturers craft great new furniture from reclaimed wood or recycled materials. This can be a great option for the buyer seeking an environmentally sound product with a modern appearance and style.

Sustainable Home Design

Furniture items are among the least recycled and account for upwards of 4% of all household waste. Purchasing used furniture helps reduce the amount of waste from furniture that goes into landfills.

However, whether homeowners purchase new or used furniture, purchasing the furniture and planning their home in a sustainable manner can help to reduce waste overall. Choosing durable materials and avoiding materials such as particleboard ensures the longevity of furniture items. Additionally, multi-functional furniture items such as pull out couches and ottomans with additional storage space can reduce the amount of materials sourced to produce multiple furniture items.

Buy Local When Possible

Whether purchasing new or used furniture items, transporting an item a long way leaves behind a large carbon footprint. Often used furniture incurs lower transportation costs than buying new furniture because people typically purchase used furniture closer to home. Production accounts for almost 3 tons of CO2 on average for every 100 rooms of furniture, and shipping the item to the customer adds another 3 tons of the greenhouse gas.


Shoppers can make environmentally-sound, sustainable decisions with their furniture whether they choose to purchase new or used. In the short term, buying new furniture produces about 1,000 times more CO2 emissions than buying used or refurbished furniture. However, opting to use sustainable materials and to optimize the long-term usage of a furniture item can reduce its environmental impact for years down the road.


I’m thinking of doing an internship. Is it worth it?

Whether a recent graduate or current student, competing for entry level positions can get very tough. There are too many students, and too few jobs, and many young people are turning to internships to get valuable work experience. Some people starting out in the workforce find internships invaluable experiences that help them establish a professional network, and some young people end up regretting that they went for an unpaid internship over something that guarantees an income.

What are my rights?
If you are a paid intern, you should have all the same rights as any other employee, unless otherwise stated. Benefits and perks are unlikely to be included in an internship compensation package, so don’t count on dental, stock options, or any other “nice to have” benefit that companies might voluntarily provide. As an intern, you should have support for professional growth, training, and development, as this is the point of an internship. The rights of a paid intern should not differ from a human resources perspective. If the contract is terminated after the probationary period, you should still receive some sort of severance package, and you can file a complaint if you are not given a proper notice period.

If you are thinking of doing an unpaid internship, be aware that from the perspective of HR, you will be looked upon essentially as a volunteer. You aren’t really an employee of the company, you are there to gain experience, so take whatever you can and learn from it. Don’t count on the company to support your learning initiatives, as they aren’t actually investing in you. Don’t be shy about asking for what you need to support your professional development. You are basically paying the company with your time, so make sure that you are getting a return on your investment!

Internships: are they worth it?

Internships are beneficial because the current generation of young people faces a lot of competition, especially when first trying to break into the work force. Anything you can find to differentiate yourself from another student is going to help you get established in your career. Internships can be worth it even just by teaching students how they should act when part of a business or organization. How a business executes projects, how the company operates, and how to communicate to colleagues are all impo
Any form of exposure you can get to a business/organization – how projects are executed, how a company operates, how to communicate. Don’t undervalue the experience even if it feels like you are doing menial work. Corporate exposure will help just by picking up business etiquette – one thing ppl often neglect to focus on. That is grooming and training that you can’t really learn from school. Observe all the physical aspects of people culture, how they sit, how they act, how they dress – this will help you later

Can I afford it?
If you have found an internship that will get your foot in the door of your chosen career and pays you enough to sustain your lifestyle, jump at the chance to establish yourself!

If you are considering an unpaid internship, the question of whether it will be worth it for you is a little more complicated. Consider if you can affort to support yourself with your savings over the term of the internship. If not, how will you fill the gap? Will taking on a part-time job be feasible? Can you save money by living with your family or room mates? Will you be filling the gap with student loans? How much debt will you need to take on to gain work experience, and how long will it take to pay off at an entry level salary? Make sure you crunch the numbers and understand exactly how much debt you will be taking on after buying food, lunches, paying for transportation and rent, your phone, and any other incedentals that won’t go away just because your pay cheque does. Will the debt be justified by a more lucrative career option later? Treat the decision similarly to how you would evaluate whether or not it is worth it to go to a post-secondary institution, as in taking on an unpaid opportunity, you are the one making the investment. Understanding the terms of your investment, both in time and money, is central to deciding whether the investment will be worthwhile.

Categories:Kijiji Jobs, Students

Easy Ways to Maximize Closet Space

There are a lot of things in life that never seem to be enough; hours of sleep, long weekends, and extra cash to spend on spontaneous indulgences – just to name a few.

Now, while we here at Kijiji don’t have the power to give you more of these things, we can however share tips that will help you with another scenario where we never seem to have enough of what we need: closet space.

Anyone with more than a few shirts, pants, and other clothing items can probably share horror stories of having to frantically dig through a crammed rack of clothing in the morning with only a few minutes to spare because you have to be out the door and headed to work for an important meeting, and you haven’t even grabbed your cup of coffee yet.

Even with some basic organizing and strategic folding, closet space still seems pretty scarce, and we’re going to go out on a limb and assume that most of us aren’t exactly in the market for a bedroom-sized walk in closet. To make your life easier and your closet seem a little roomier, here are some simple, cost-effective ways to maximize existing closet space.

Condense, Condense, Condense!

The first step is to really evaluate what’s in your closet and be willing to part ways with those old pieces you’re never going to wear again. We know it can be hard to let go of that 10-year-old sweatshirt from high school or that skirt that just might come back in style, but the key to freeing up space is to only have what’s wearable in there. Organize a yard sale or street sale if you want to make a little cash and bond with your neighbors, or do some good in your community- a quick search for local charities or clothing drives will show you all the local groups that could put your belongings to good use!

Make It A Double!

Most closets have a hanging bar already but most of us are all too familiar with how crowded that one bar ends up getting when everything is hung up there. Putting in a second bar somewhere above the first can not only help spread the bulk of the clothing (making it easier to find what you need) but also maximize closet space by using space that otherwise would be empty.

Don’t Forget about Floors and Doors!

We often see the floor as just the surface our feet walk upon, but when it comes to closet space, floors are a perfect place to put different types of storage containers. There are a whole variety of storage baskets and boxes available that also range in materials, (flexible or sturdy), depending on what it is you have to store. Hats, scarves, handbags, accessories, and other miscellaneous items can be easily stored and accessed in these handy dandy containers. In the same vein, doors are also usually overlooked but they actually can serve as the perfect backdrop for hanging racks and storage pouches to store whatever knick knacks, accessories, or clothing.

When In Doubt, Add Some Light!

We know what you’re thinking. Adding light to a closet can help us maximize space? Well, the thing is, closets are notoriously dark, especially when you burrow into the deep corners where you’ve folded or hung various articles of clothing. By adding a pot light or two, you open the space up visually and chances are you’re going to be able to utilize more space since you can actually see it now!

Get Creative With Hangers!

Gone are the days where hangers hang merely one piece of clothing. These days, single hangers can come with attachments or contain some variation that allow multiple pieces of clothing to hang separately in a way that saves space and is easy to take from. Hangers now also vary in length and size depending on the type of clothing you want to hang, so if you use your imagination, you can definitely get creative with mixing and match, and in the end, you’ll be shocked at how much space gets freed up.