The Kindle and the climate - update
Some quick facts:
In the United States,Amazon currently holds a 45 percent market shareof e-reader devices, with one main competitor Sony trailing at 30 percent.
E-readers could have a major impact on improving the sustainability and environmental impact on the publishing industry, one of the world’s most polluting sectors. In 2008, the U.S. book and newspaper industries combined resulted in the harvesting of125 million trees, not to mention wastewater that was produced or its massive carbon footprint.
On average, the carbon emitted in the lifecycle of a Kindle isfully offset after the first year of use. Any additional years of use result in net carbon savings, equivalent to an average of168 kg of CO 2per year(the emissions produced in the manufacture and distribution of 22.5 books).
All this said, we have to keep in mind that e-readers are still a niche technology, with a little more than 1 million units sold to date. Their impact on the environment, let it be good or bad, is in reality still very limited.
Update: Amazonannouncedthat on Christmas Day, for the first time ever, customers purchased more Kindle books than physical books. Next to this, the Kindle has become the most gifted item in Amazon's history.