THE TRUTH IS STAGGERING
You think we’re just being dramatic? Take a look at the facts:
- 40% of U.S. landfill trash is paper products.
- The paper industry is the third largest contributor to global warming.
- The average American discards of 700 pounds or more of paper each year.
- If every household in the U.S. used just one less 70-sheet roll of virgin fiber paper towels, that would save 544,000 trees each year. Change that to using three less rolls per U.S. household per year, and that would save 120,000 tons of waste and $4.1 million in landfill dumping fees.
- Your typical paper towel is manufactured using chlorine, which releases carcinogenic dioxins and furans.
- Forests store 50% of the world's terrestrial carbon. (In other words, they are awfully important "carbon sinks" that hold onto pollution that would otherwise lead to global warming.)
- Half the world's forests have already been cleared or burned, and 80% of what's left has been seriously degraded.
- 42% of the industrial wood harvest is used to make paper.
- The paper industry is the 4th largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions among United States manufacturing industries, and contributes 9% of the manufacturing sector's carbon emissions.
- Paper accounts for 25% of landfill waste (and one third of municipal landfill waste).
- Municipal landfills account for one third of human-related methane emissions (and methane is 23-times more potent a greenhouse gas than is carbon dioxide).
According to livestrong.com, it is estimated that “if each Washington resident used just one paper towel per day, the state would generate 134,312 tons of waste per year.”
RECYCLED PRODUCTS AND BPA
But, what about recycled paper towels? Aren’t they a good alternative? In fact, no. I hate to burst the recycling bubble, but this is one case where recycling may not be a great option. Regular paper towels contain bisphenol-A (otherwise known as BPA), an endocrine disrupter associated with breast and prostate cancers, metabolic disorders including type 2 diabetes and obesity, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Shockingly, though, studies demonstrate that recycled paper products contain levels of BPA even higher than those made from virgin material.
(Source- "The Body Toxic" by Nena Baker)
THE TRULY GREEN ALTERNATIVE
So, what’s the answer? Glad you asked! More and more people are learning about the benefits (both financial and environmental) of reusable paper towels. They can be used, washed, and reused (20+ times!), plus they can be made in a pattern that actually matches your kitchen design theme - big-name paper towel manufacturers can’t say that...I mean, how many times have you looked at your disposable paper towels’ teacup pattern and thought, “what idiot came up with that??!” They are super absorbent and snap together so you can wrap them around your paper towel holder and have them on display! When you’ve finished using them, just throw them in the laundry for a spin and voila! Clean and ready-to-use!
Check out the set of unpaper towels made by our very own Greenola Girl Erin! Just for our fans, she’s created this super cute bunch of green-themed towels and we will send them to one lucky reader! The giveaway ends Tuesday April 24 at 12:01 a.m...good luck!!
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