The purpose of the book Environmental Crime: A Sourcebook by Ronald G. Burns and Michael J. Lynch is to focus on the need for those who study crime and justice to use environmental data more. The point is made that environmental crimes not only cause damage to nature, though that in itself is significant. Estimates suggest that ten times more people die from the results of environmental crimes than die from homicide. The estimated number of victims who suffer debilitating diseases and injuries due to exposure to toxins is in the hundreds of thousands, perhaps reaching a million. The authors state that these “deaths, injuries, and illnesses are more common, and have a greater impact on the average person than ordinary crime.”
The strength of this book is that it is not only for criminal science students. The environment affects all of us. Reading just a chapter or two will raise your consciousness about why this topic is important to you.