Break the Paper Towel Habit

Cleaning Green

Break the Paper Towel Habit
They’re convenient and easy to use, but they’re bad for the environment. You don’t need an intervention to break the paper-towel habit
Paper towels are great for wiping up a spill, cleaning a mirror or drying hands, which is why the average American family uses about two rolls of paper towels every week! So whats the problem?
 
So what’s wrong with paper towels?
  • Trees are cut down. The “paper” in paper towels reminds us that our temporary convenience comes at the price of a tree which provides oxygen, shade, beauty, and a home to wild creatures. “Paper towels are made from virgin tree pulp,” says Kristin Arrigo, environmental columnist and author of Seasonal Home Repair Checklist: Eco-Alternatives for Maintaining Your Home. “Virgin” paper towels are those which have no post-consumer fiber.
  • They have a big carbon footprint. Energy, most of which comes from the burning of fossil fuels, is needed to harvest, manufacture, transport, and dispose of paper towels. Producing one 8-Ounce Roll of paper towels releases about 1.25 lbs. of Carbon Dioxide into the atmosphere. Think about it!
  • Paper Towels end up in landfills. You can’t recycle a paper towel — after it has been used and thrown away. it goes to a landfill. In fact, products like paper towels make up more than one-third of landfill trash, according to CarbonRally.com

How you can make a difference

Switch to a reusable and washable cloth or towel

Reusable cleaning cloths can be used for a variety of different household jobs

Such as some of the following:

  • cleaning up wet & dry spills
  • polishing furniture or appliances
  • cleaning sinks & counter tops
  • washing cars & boats
  • drying off your furry pets

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