Monday, February 9, 2009

#39 A roll of paper towels can last how long?

So what's the significance of this one little empty paper towel tube?  (Besides that it's being shown off by my cute boy.)  That tube is the inside of the roll of paper towels that was already partially used up in January of 2008 when my family started to cut way back on paper products use.   We finally actually used it up.  That's because I reserve the use of paper towels for only the ickiest of jobs, like cleaning poop or puke off the floor or something seriously greasy that wouldn't wash well out of a towel.  It really isn't hard to grab a cloth towel instead of a paper one.  And a few extra towels doesn't have much effect on the amount of laundry I do.  So next time you have a mess to clean up, think about the lasting effects of grabbing that paper towel!  I used to use paper towels in the bathroom to dry my face (the hand towels hold too much bacteria) but discovered it's just as effective to keep  a stack of small clean towels and use those instead.

One statistic I found stated that "The NRDC estimates that if every household in the United States used one less roll of paper towels, we could save 544,000 trees."  Alright, what about several less rolls of paper towels?  And if can't use cloth towels, you could at least use recycled paper towels.  I plan to buy recycled next time I need some, but right now since I bought a package before I started this plan, I have about a 20-year supply.

Pros:  Less paper wasted, less trees dead.  Cloth towels really clean things up better than paper towels, no matter what the quality of paper towels you buy.  Paper towels are not only wasteful, but very expensive!

Cons: Though it may be a small amount, it still is more laundry to do and fold.


David said...

If people want to get serious (and cleaner) about the environment then they should get a Bathroom Bidet Sprayer from and you won't even need toilet paper anymore, just a towel to dry off! It's cheap and can be installed without a plumber; and runs off the same water line to your toilet. . You'll probably pay for it in a few months of toilet paper savings. And after using one of these you won't know how you lasted all those years with wadded up handfuls of toilet paper, nasty. Now we're talking green and helping the environment without any pain.

Gigi said...

I keep a pile of cheap thin wash cloths in one of my kitchen drawers just to clean-up whatever messes the kids make. So much better than paper towels!

Amy Ellen said...

Hi. I can't email you because my outlook isn't operational... but have you heard of Earth Hour? I would love to get the word out about it, but it is beyond the scope of my blog. It would be perfect for yours! Email me for details... ae at healthbeginswithmom .com

Aaron, Julie, and Trey said...

We have paper towels on hand for milk spills that would sour in cloth and for oil that would catch the dryer on fire and sometimes for spills that will stain (depends on how I care about the cloth towels we have on hand)....but a roll only lasts a few months here. You went a whole year? Maybe somebody's been using the paper towels behind my back-lol. I am SO impressed!