I have a confession to make: Recently, I've been feeling guilty.
More recently, I've been making an effort to better serve the environment and the animal existence on this beautiful planet we're so lucky to call our own. That's just the thing, isn't it? It's not only ours.
So, why am I constantly buying books for pleasure?
Disclaimer: This issue is one that, thankfully, so many are so passionate about. I still have a lot to learn - don't we all? I wrote this post based on my own personal research and findings. If you have supplemental information to share, please send me a message! I'm always looking to learn more, I just ask that you reach out in a kind manner.
It's so important to remember how much of a difference a small change is able to make in the bigger picture. So, in the past 6 months, I've been trying to do my part in becoming more aware of what I'm using (and re-using!)
Books hold a certain level of nostalgia for me.
As a kid, I was always reading. My Mom is also an avid reader and she really made an effort to pass that along to me at a young age.
I used to be defiantly nostalgic about it, comparable to the more mature generation's grumblings about how everyone is so connected to technology. I started to feel uneasy as I sounded off my approval for companies (like Starbucks) who were ditching straws, meanwhile remembering the stack of books sitting on my windowsill at home, unopened…
Not my proudest moment.
While doing some digging, I came across a few different schools of thought about whether e-readers are actually better for the environment. What I learned is simple.
The reality is that there is some environmental drawback to creating an e-reader or iPad, whatever your device of choice may be. E-readers are created during a manufacturing process that, no doubt, will have it's effect on the environment. However, because you're using one device repeatedly, instead of purchasing multiple books, there is definitely some truth to it being better for the environment than just reading books. This is especially true considering the little amount of electricity e-readers use.
From what I've read, the key is to find a device you love and stick with it for the long haul, reading between 20-30 books to really break even and reduce your carbon footprint.
SO WHAT Did I DO WITH THE BOOKS I HAVE?
I made two separate piles: one for donations and one for impact.
Drop the first pile off at your local library or give them to a friend who will do the same. Keep the second pile and set the books that hold value beyond their stories on display in your home; The ones that changed your level of thinking, that hold sentimental value, that are highlighted and noted in the margins, that are signed by your favorite author, that you want to pass on to the next generations.
Narrow them down, do your part.
"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go!"
- Dr. Seuss - Oh, the Places You'll Go!