Document Type

Honors Thesis

Publication Date

Spring 5-2018


The production of material goods requires resource extraction, leading to the release of carbon emissions into the atmosphere. With the growing threat of climate change, the demand for virgin production is increasingly problematic. Reusing products inherently decreases the demand for material production. As a result, reuse has been shown to mitigate many of the negative impacts of climate change. This thesis focuses on the potential for waste reduction by exploring Mainers’ motivations for participating in Maine’s reuse markets. Eight semi-structured interviews with secondhand shoppers were conducted. Qualitative analysis revealed that four major categories represented consumer motivations to purchase secondhand goods: individualist, social, economic, and critical. This research seeks to gain a deeper understanding of consumer positionality in Maine’s reuse markets. These markets both respond to and inform a statewide reuse culture.

Included in

Climate Commons