Why You Should Stop Using Paper Towels.


This might be the only time I advocate for buying something. Please go directly to the nearest store and buy yourself some pretty hand towels, beautiful cloth napkins, and (for those of you who are really dedicated) a set of fabric handkerchiefs. 

Paper towels are a huge environmental issue.  Globally, discarded paper towels result in 254 million tons of trash every year. and in the U.S. alone we use more than 13 billion pounds of paper towels each year. Did you just read those numbers? That's insane. Especially when you learn:

To make one ton of paper towels, 17 trees and 20,000 gallons of water are polluted.

That means that we need to plant 51,000 trees per day to replace the number of paper towels that are discarded every day - and those numbers don't even account for the transportation of the paper towels, or the reduction in trees removing carbon from the atmosphere, cooling the globe, or providing wildlife shelter.

If every household in the U.S. used just one less 70-sheet roll of paper towels, that would save 544,000 trees each year.

So, please go buy (or even better, make) those pretty hand towels and cloth napkins you've been eyeing. Call it a gift to the environment. Then buy your friend a set too. 

If we move to using reusable towels, napkins, and handkerchiefs perhaps we can get every household in the U.S. to use three less rolls of paper towels each year.  Saving 120,000 tons of waste and $4.1 million in landfill dumping fees. Plus all of those other environmental costs that aren't included.

Not sure where to get some?

Here's some dishtowels, napkins, and handkerchiefs that I like. If you want to make your own, here's a great tutorial.