Blog Post: Confessions of an Eco-Sinner
This week I finished reading an interesting book called "Confessions of an Eco-Sinner: Tracking down the sources of my stuff" by Fred Pearce and I must say that I really enjoyed it.
The book is about the life of the author, an average citizen of the United Kingdom and the discovery of his true ecological footprint. He explores the sources of his clothing, food, jewellery and also the final destination of his recycled products, garbage and many other interesting aspects of his life.
Some of the more interesting aspects of the book were a dissection of the "Fair Trade" industry and how much of it is a marketing system over here, but often yields little benefit for the farmers. I enjoyed learning about the history of Banana's and which describes the an odd genetic defect which in essence leaves bananas without seeds, meaning we have a finite about of trees left which leaves us precariously susceptible to any blight which may attack them.
The entire section on clothing was quite interesting, which described the world cotton markets from growing to processing, sweat shops and more. But at the same time it shows the massive exploitation of water resources and it's affect on regions of the world.
In part four of the book he goes in to electronics, their source, manufacturing and recycling processes. This area is especially dear to me because I'm in the technology industry. I know that there are a great deal of deadly substances involved in the production of electronics, and proper disposal is essential. But what if your properly recycled goods found their way to China or India to be melted in vats of acid to reclaim their metals? Doesn't sound very sustainable to me!
This book has loads of interesting chapters from beer cans to gold ore, electricity sources and so much more. It's written in a friendly way which I think a joe average guy can really relate to in his day to day life.
I strongly recommend borrowing this book from the Library and giving it a read!
Author: Fred Pearce