Keeping the Ebook Revolution Green

Monday, November 02, 2009 0 Comments A+ a-

You guys know I'm an ebook fan both as an author and a reader. I'm jazzed about all the ebook readers coming out and am excited because these are just the beginning.

Since ebooks are always touted as going green whether in the submission and editing process (thank you guys for this, you're life savers!) but also in book releases, publishers and the big companies have to keep this in mind also.

Agent Richard Curtis blogged a month ago at E-Reads under the title Getting Rid of E-Trash? Dump it on Asia's Poor. It's a wonderful write-up (make sure you check it out) where he brings up a good question: when the next generation of e-readers arrives, what's going to happen to the Kindle or Sony E-Reader you replace?

The answer?

If what's happening in Europe is any guideline, it will end up in a toxic e-waste landfill in Asia and Africa where the destitute, many of them children, will scavenge it for scrap. These scavengers incur horrifying and often fatal skin, lung, intestinal and reproductive organ ailments from the plastics, metals and gases that go into discarded cell phones, televisions, computers, keyboards, monitors,cables and similar e-scrap.
The picture on the site of a dump truck carrying tons of discarded cellphones, computers and other devices is disheartening. These are all current, but what will happen in the near future when the current Kindles, Sony Readers and other readers are out of style for the next gen tablets?

Hopefully the industry will keep this in mind as the ebook revolution continues to rise.