In August 2018 Ethical Consumer sent a questionnaire to Books Etc, which included a question about the company's environmental policy. No response was received. The company's website was searched. No policy could be found.
An environmental policy was deemed necessary to report on its environmental performance and set targets for the future. A strong policy would include two future, quantified targets, demonstrate that the company had a reasonable understanding of its main impacts, be dated within the previous two years and be independently verified.
Books Etc had none of these, therefore it received Ethical Consumer's worst rating for Environmental Reporting.

Reference:

http://www.booksetc.co.uk/ (9 August 2018)

In August 2018 Ethical Consumer viewed the Books Etc website www.booksetc.co.uk and found that the company sold leather-bound books, however, it was not considered to form a substantial part of its business. As a result the company lost half a mark under Ethical Consumer’s Animal Rights category.
It also lost half a mark Pollution and Toxics category for the following reason. Leather, as the hide of a dead animal, naturally decomposes. To prevent this decomposition the leather industry uses a cocktail of harmful chemicals to preserve leather, including trivalent chromium sulphate, sodium sulphide, sodium sulfhydrate, arsenic and cyanide. Tannery effluent also contains large amounts of other pollutants, such as protein, hair, salt, lime sludge and acids. These can all pollute the land, air and water supply, making it a highly polluting industry.

Reference:

http://www.booksetc.co.uk/ (9 August 2018)

In August 2018 Ethical Consumer sent Books Etc a questionnaire requesting information about the company’s timber sourcing policy and practices. No response was received. The company’s website, was searched and a number of products containing paper were found. How illegal timber was excluded from the company’s supply chain was not discussed, no clear targets were presented and minimum standards relating to the sourcing of timber products was not stated. Books Etc therefore received Ethical Consumer’s worst rating for its timber and paper sourcing policy.

Reference:

http://www.booksetc.co.uk/ (9 August 2018)