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Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash…

Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash

by Edward Humes

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An interesting, informative, and sobering look at how much waste we produce, where it goes, what impact it has on the environment, and what can be done to lesson the impact. ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
Incisive journalist's overview of the problems of overconsumption and waste. Terrifying description of the Plastic Garbage Island of the Pacific and offers an interesting and firm refutation of official consumption figures. 102 tons per person per lifetime - rather scary stuff.

Now some of the worst offenders in the US are going away - newspapers and phone books, which consist of the majority of paper waste, are rapidly declining in circulation - there has been a decline in that regard. The incredible majority of things we throw away can be reused or composed or recycled, and it'll be cheaper. Legislation can only go so far, and it's been stiffly opposed in America. There has to be a shift in attitudes away from the consumer-based model. Good luck with that, though.

Makes garbage interesting and makes you want to do something about it.

EDIT: It seems Hawaii has moved towards a plastic bag ban, effective this July - so there ARE laws in the US after all.
http://positive-press-daily.tumblr.com/post/23469329457/hawaii-to-become-first-u... ( )
  HadriantheBlind | Mar 30, 2013 |
“Garbology” will teach you more about trash, waste, and garbage in America than you ever thought there was to know about this subject. For example, waste is big business. Landfills were originally a temporary solution that became a permanent practice. The US is one of the most wasteful nations on the planet. Our current rate of waste production cannot be sustained for much longer. Recycling isn’t nearly as helpful as most people think it is. And all of this is evidence of American selfishness, indulgence, and obliviousness.

Humes’ writing is entertaining and informative. He weaves his narrative so well that it’s quite easy to forget that you’re actually reading about garbage. He also structures this book very effectively—he tells a great deal about the history of waste management in the US, he examines the current garbage crisis, and he offers very practical solutions.

Obviously, this book is not for everyone. If you like non-fiction, however, give this one a try. You’ll probably enjoy it. ( )
  jimrgill | Jan 28, 2013 |
Book review by Skyler T., posted by CA Library:

"Garbology by Edward Humes and it is a nonfiction book told as nonfiction. What’s the book about, the books about garbage! Garbology of course no just garbage. The book teaches you about landfills and dumps, and oceans and how garbage impacts them all in a way or two.

The book garbology also teaches you about how you can safely and none safely have dumps or landfills. Also how to get garbage out of the ocean and waters. People who are trying to make a difference and help. It tells us how our paper waste can help another country that heeds paper and how someone makes a lot of money from that.

This book also tells you stores of people who have been affected by garbage in their life. And how to stop getting garbage, how it can affect more people in the future.

This is an all in all good book it does not make you want to stop reading it and it does not make you want to stop because it is boring its actually is pretty interesting ." ( )
  calibrary1 | Nov 28, 2012 |
wow, this is a great book to read. In the beginning it shows the reality in USA and the Oceans, landfills, garbage patch in the Pacific and trash tracking devices, later you can learn from other countries and inventive people that there is a way out. Easy to read and full of ideas to make a better life and safe money. ( )
  brigitte64 | May 15, 2012 |
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In memory of my grandmother Maggie,
who survived famine, weathered the Great Depression,
drank her Irish whiskey neat, taught me to play poker at age seven,
and instructed me that, while wasting is not exactly a sin,
it is rather stupid
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"A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist takes readers on a surprising tour of the world of garbage. Trash is America's largest export. Individually, we make more than four pounds a day, sixty-four tons across a lifetime. We make so much of it that trash dominates America's place in the global economy--now the most prized product made in the United States. In 2010, China's number-one export to the U.S. was computer equipment. America's two biggest exports were paper waste and scrap metal. Somehow, a country that once built things for the rest of the world has transformed itself into China's trash compactor. In Garbology, Edward Humes reveals what this world of trash looks like, how we got here, and what some families, communities, and other countries are doing to find a way back from a world of waste. Highlights include: Los Angeles's sixty-story garbage mountain, so big and bizarrely prominent that it has spawned its own climate, habitat, and tour business. The waste trackers of MIT, whose "smart trash" has exposed the secret life and dirty death of what we throw away. China's garbage queen, Zhang Yin, who started collecting scrap paper in the 1990s and turned it into a multibillion-dollar business exporting American trash to make Chinese products to sell back to Americans. Artisan Bea Johnson, whose family has found that generating less waste has translated into more money, less debt, and more leisure time. As Wal-Mart aims for zero-waste strategies and household recycling has become second nature, interest in trash has clearly reached new heights. From the quirky to the astounding, Garbology weighs in with remarkable true tales from the front lines of the war on waste. "-- "Narrative science book about trash"--… (more)

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