Junkyard Planet: Travels in the Billion-Dollar Trash Trade

Kobo ebook | November 12, 2013

byAdam Minter

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How can garbage turn into gold? What does recycling have to do with globalization? Where does all that stuff we throw away go, anyway?

When you drop your Diet Coke can or yesterdayâ s newspaper in the recycling bin, where does it go? Probably halfway around the world, to people and places that clean up what you donâ t want and turn it into something you canâ t wait to buy. In Junkyard Planet, Adam Minterâ veteran journalist and son of an American junkyard ownerâ travels deeply into a vast, often hidden, 500-billion-dollar industry thatâ s transforming our economy and environment.

Minter takes us from back-alley Chinese computer recycling operations to recycling factories capable of processing a jumbo jetâ s worth of trash every day. Along the way, we meet an international cast of characters who have figured out how to squeeze Silicon Valley-scale fortunes from what we all throw away. Junkyard Planet reveals how â going greenâ ? usually means making moneyâ and why thatâ s often the most sustainable choice, even when the recycling methods arenâ t pretty.

With unmatched access to and insight on the waste industry, and the explanatory gifts and an eye for detail worthy of a John McPhee or William Langewiesche, Minter traces the export of Americaâ s garbage and the massive profits that China and other rising nations earn from it. What emerges is an engaging, colorful, and sometimes troubling tale of how the way we consume and discard stuff brings home the ascent of a developing world that recognizes value where Americans donâ t. Junkyard Planet reveals that Americans might need to learn a smarter way to take out the trash.

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From the Publisher

How can garbage turn into gold? What does recycling have to do with globalization? Where does all that stuff we throw away go, anyway? When you drop your Diet Coke can or yesterdayâ s newspaper in the recycling bin, where does it go? Probably halfway around the world, to people and places that clean up what you donâ t want and turn i...

Format:Kobo ebookPublished:November 12, 2013Publisher:Bloomsbury PublishingLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1608197921

ISBN - 13:9781608197927

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from amazing insights into the recycling industry this was a fascinating read - much more than expected. Minter gives a personal and knowledgeable tour of recycling enterprises in the US, Asia and Africa. It gave me new understanding of the interests, benefits and driving forces behind recycling, the beneficial role it can play in developing countries, and in our long-term sustainability.
Date published: 2016-01-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good, 25% too long The information is good, practical, how-it-really-works. But like many books, it strives to be an certain length and the last few chapters felt quite repetitive.
Date published: 2014-05-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fascinating read! I thought I was recycling because I separated my paper products- green conscious because I checked the rating on plastic packaging. I could not put this book down, once I started reading. Clearly, North Americans know and understand very little about the real business of recycling. I'm going to have to work harder at separating 'green' from 'consumer'.
Date published: 2014-05-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Junkyard Planet Fascinating insight into what happens after the recycle bin gets dumped in the truck in your back lane. Well written, objective and insightful. A must-read for anyone concerned with the health of our planet.
Date published: 2013-12-30