This year, Rita Toews' promotion of Read an E-book Week
discusses the environmental friendliness of e-books... a theme that rings strongly with people in 2008. After all, we are all seeking ways to shrink our environmental footprint, cut back on the resources we use, and the waste we produce, on our one and only planet Earth.
Paper production is incredibly wasteful, and well beyond just the trees that are cut down: An incredible amount of electricity goes into running a paper production plant, enormous amounts of water are used, and up to 240 specific chemicals are applied, to create the print paper generally used for books and newspapers. And most of those chemicals, still in the waste water after use, are simply poured into the nearest watershed... maybe yours.
Then those books are printed, using inks that are often made up of toxic chemicals. They must be transported to your local store or warehouse, or to your home, using polluting fossil fuels in transport. And many books that are not sold end up being returned to be burned, or landfilled, making them a complete waste of resources.
E-books are a great way to lessen your impact on the environment. E-books have the advantage of requiring only electricity to be produced, transported, stored, and read. An e-book reader is produced and bought once, but can be re-used to read thousands of books. And when you're done with the book, you can just hit the "delete" button... no waste product goes to the local incinerator or landfill.
So, if you're looking for a way to contribute to the greening and resource-saving of the world, e-books are an excellent way to go. And if you're looking for some good reasons for buying e-books to pass along to others, now you have it!