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Yahoo! Green Aims to Make Planet-Saving Ideas Real

Fuego110 at Wikimedia Commons, public domain)If you doubt there are a lot of clever and green do-it-yourselfers out there, check out Yahoo! Green’s Make It Green gallery, which features — as of today — 21 ideas from real people across the country looking to make the planet a better place.

For a $10 entry fee, anyone with a great do-it-yourself project can submit his or her idea to the site, where visitors can vote for the ideas they like best. Yahoo! will also put on display some of the top product ideas during next week’s Maker Faire in San Mateo, California.

But this is more than an exercise in virtual brainstorming: Yahoo! plans, after the competition’s end, to develop the best ideas and help get them out into the marketplace. The person who submits the winning idea will get a share of the product’s sales, along with a $2,500 prize and a chance to appear on the “Everyday Edisons” television show.

The deadline for submitting ideas is June 30.

So what sort of ideas are we talking about? One of my favorites so far is Cosmo K.’s solar-powered lawnmower (he’s actually attached a solar panel to a standard push mower and says he gets enough energy to mow fossil-fuel free for nearly an hour at a time). Another neat one is Scott’s decorative combination weathervane-wind turbine, which he says has cut his electric bill in half.

There are plenty of other clever concepts as well: plant-based diapers, a solar clothes-dryer that works faster than line-drying, an attachment that reduces the energy consumption of hair dryers and lots more.

Whether you’ve got a great green idea of your own or just want to support a fellow green, be sure to check out the Make It Green Gallery at Yahoo! Green.