Forgot Password?
Written by Javier Bustamante   
Share |
Thursday, 07 November 2013

Trading Books

Libraries are great, but sometimes you may want to keep a book, or write in it, or find an obscure book your library does not have. Or perhaps you do not live near a big library. Buying new books can be fun, but sometimes you just want to read a book and then read another and another, without amassing a huge collection. Trading books gives you an opportunity to reduce waste and save the energy needed to print new books. If you're an avid reader or someone who enjoys reading something new from time to time here are a few sites that will allow you to read as much or as little while reducing the waste that comes from consumerism.

Paper Book Swap
How it works: Sign up for membership and post ten books. Each time a book is requested you print a "wrapper", affix postage, and drop it in the mail. For every book you send out, you receive one credit, worth one book. You can then request a book, and the owner will mail it to you. If you're also intrested in trading CDs or DVDs they have sister sites that allow you to do that as well.

Cost: Membership is currently free. You pay the price of postage on the books you mail.

Loan or Keep: "The books you receive are free and yours to keep"1 or repost them on the website. You do not get the books you give away back.

Special Features: For an $8 yearly fee you can participate in the box-o-book program. This allows you to trade a whole box of books with someone with a collection you are interested in, if they want to borrow books from you as well. This allows you to save on postage and make one trip to the post office.

The site also has an app you can download for your iPhone but it'll cost you $1.99.



How it works: This site is fairly similar, but the point system is different. For every book you post you get one tenth (0.1) of a point, and every time you send a book you get 1 point for locations within the country and three points for outside the country. Requesting a book costs 1 point within the country and 3 points outside. The founder wants to encourage the sharing of books between countries since books from other countries are often hard to find using traditional methods. You must share 1 book for every 2 you receive.

Cost: Membership is free. You must pay postage for the books you mail.

Loan or Keep: "Once you've read a book, you can keep it forever or put it back into BookMooch for someone else, as you wish."2

Special Features: If you have extra points you can donate them to charities so that people can receive free books. Book receivers rate the book senders. People may be more willing to send books to people with good ratings.

How it Works: A book renting site that has been reffered to as the "Netflix for books".4 You order the books you want and return them when you are done. Since you don't have to pay for shipping, if you read 4 or 5 books a month it probably comes to about the same cost as the trading sites. On the other hand, you don't get to keep the books you receive.

Cost: The cheapest plan will cost you $7.50 the first month to rent two books at a time and then $14.99 thereafter.5 There are other plans that will allow you to rent more books at a time but are a bit pricier. They also have separate membership plans if you're interested in audiobooks. Shipping is paid for in both directions.6

Loan or Keep: Rental. However, you can buy the book if you would like to keep it.7

Website: 8

Book Crossing
How it Works: You choose a book you would like to "register" and label it with a BCID which is a number the site generates that allows you to follow your book.9 Users write journal entries about their books and track the journeys of the books they have "released".

Cost: Free. You give away books with no promise of receiving a book back.

Loan or Keep: Once the book is released, who knows what will happen to it. The idea is to keep passing the books along.

Website: 10

Check out Friedbeef's Tech listing of Top Ten free book sites: Part 1 and Part 2, as well as a compilation of reader suggestions. These include both real books and e-books.

What makes the online sites so clever is that they can connect you to books from all over the world but there are other ways to enjoy a second hand book. An alternative to trading books online is visiting a used bookstore. There you can sell or trade in your books and buy different ones. Many libraries have book sales, either of their old books or of books people donate. You can also trade books the old fashioned way with family or friends. However you trade a book, it’s a great opportunity to read more while wasting less!

Browse all Greeniacs Guides Browse all Greeniacs Guides        Browse all Greeniacs Articles


Add your comment
RSS comments

Only registered users can write comments.
Please login or register.

Click here to Register.  Click here to login.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 07 November 2013 )


Green Facts

  • Glass can be recycled over and over again without ever wearing down.

  • Nudge your thermostat up two degrees in the summer and down two degrees in the winter to prevent 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.

  • Recycling 100 million cell phones can save enough energy to power 18,500 homes in the U.S. for a year.

  • A laptop consumes five times less electricity than a desktop computer.

  • An aluminum can that is thrown away instead of recycled will still be a can 500 years from now!

  • You will save 300 pounds of carbon dioxide for every 10,000 miles you drive if you always keep your carís tires fully inflated.

  • Current sea ice levels are at least 47% lower than they were in 1979.

  • It takes 6,000,000 trees to make 1 year's worth of tissues for the world.

  • For every 38,000 bills consumers pay online instead of by mail, 5,058 pounds of greenhouse gases are avoided and two tons of trees are preserved.

  • A steel mill using recycled scrap reduces related water pollution, air pollution, and mining wastes by about 70%.

  • Refrigerators built in 1975 used 4 times more energy than current models.

  • Due to tiger poaching, habitat destruction, and other human-tiger conflicts, tigers now number around 3,200óa decrease in population by about 70% from 100 years ago.

  • In the United States, automobiles produce over 20 percent of total carbon emissions. Walk or bike and you'll save one pound of carbon for every mile you travel.

  • Americans use 100 million tin and steel cans every day.

  • Plastic bags and other plastic garbage thrown into the ocean kill as many as 1,000,000 sea creatures every year.

  • 82 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. come from burning fossil fuels.

  • A tree that provides a home with shade from the sun can reduce the energy required to run the air conditioner and save an additional 200 to 2,000 pounds of carbon over its lifetime.

  • The World Health Organization estimates that 2 million people die prematurely worldwide every year due to air pollution.

  • Americans throw away more than 120 million cell phones each year, which contribute 60,000 tons of waste to landfills annually.

  • In California homes, about 10% of energy usage is related to TVs, DVRs, cable and satellite boxes, and DVD players.

  • A single quart of motor oil, if disposed of improperly, can contaminate up to 2,000,000 gallons of fresh water.

  • American workers spend an average of 47 hours per year commuting through rush hour traffic. This adds up to 23 billion gallons of gas wasted in traffic each year.

  • Shaving 10 miles off of your weekly driving pattern can eliminate about 500 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions a year.

  • Recycling aluminum saves 95% of the energy used to make the material from scratch.

  • Every week about 20 species of plants and animals become extinct.

  • 77% of people who commute to work by car drive alone.

  • Turning off the tap when brushing your teeth can save as much as 10 gallons a day per person.

  • Recycling 1 million laptop computers can save the amount of energy used by 3,657 homes in the U.S. over the course of a year.

  • States with bottle deposit laws have 35-40% less litter by volume.

  • One recycled aluminum can will save enough energy to run a 100-watt bulb for 20 hours, a computer for 3 hours, or a TV for 2 hours.

  • Less than 1% of electricity in the United States is generated from solar power.

  • Washing your clothes in cold or warm instead of hot water saves 500 pounds of carbon dioxide a year, and drying your clothes on a clothesline six months out of the year would save another 700 pounds.

  • Americans throw away enough aluminum to rebuild our entire commercial fleet of airplanes every 3 months

  • Recycling for one year at Stanford University saved the equivalent of 33,913 trees and the need for 636 tons of iron ore, coal, and limestone.

  • You will save 100 pounds of carbon for each incandescent bulb that you replace with a compact fluorescent bulb (CFL), over the life of the bulb.

  • If every U.S. household turned the thermostat down by 10 degrees for seven hours each night during the cold months, and seven hours each weekday, it would prevent nearly gas emissions.

  • Bamboo absorbs 35% more carbon dioxide than equivalent stands of trees.

  • Youíll save two pounds of carbon for every 20 glass bottles that you recycle.

  • Rainforests are being cut down at the rate of 100 acres per minute.