A conservative estimate places the number of active landfills in the USA at around 3,000 – and there are over 10,000 “non-active” sites, as well. Along with other trash products, old and outdated books that are thrown away can wind up rotting for decades in these polluting environments.
To help decrease the need for landfill space, students and teachers can donate or recycle their textbooks. Because textbooks are often updated, old editions can quickly lose their value to students while still retaining the value inherent in their materials.
Because paper releases methane gas as it decays in a landfill , taking the opportunity to donate or recycle your books doesn’t just reduce the use of resources and chemicals – it also decreases the harmful gases that are released into the Earth’s atmosphere when paper books are thrown away. The best option for teachers and students who want to be planet-friendly with their old texts is to donate them to charities like ours.