AmazonBasics, an Amazon trademark launched more than 10 years ago, and we know as little about it now as we do about Amazon as a whole. Like most Amazon details, the origin of AmazonBasics products is a mystery.
In an article about OneZero Sarah Emerson revealed the origin of one of Amazon's best-selling products: the AmazonBasics AA battery. It tracks the battery directly to the source and works its way toward the end of the product life cycle, indicating where the path becomes cloudy. She does a great job of explaining the environmental impact and ethical issues involved in producing alkaline batteries along the way. While Amazon will not disclose details of its vendors on its own, it has confirmed Emerson's reporting.
Here are some surprising things I learned from reading this article:
- Batteries are also largely produced by the fate of fossil fuels and are capable of delivering only less than 1 percent of the amount of energy used to produce them. When you add up all the emissions, a battery device actually has a larger carbon footprint than a wall-mounted appliance.
- There is still no consensus on what to do with your battery at the end of its life. There is no policy to say whether the batteries are toxic or you should throw them in the trash. Collecting and recycling batteries requires so much energy that it won't actually save any energy.
For the full AmazonBasics battery story, read the entire piece on OneZero .