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164 Green Wipes It Clean 2009-12-16

Trader Joe's recycled toilet paper

Yesterday, the Nashville Tennessean posted a green article, "Environmentalists Roll Out TP Debate." While the topic was funny, the article exposed some green issues.

If Americans used just one roll of recycled tissue, 400,000 trees would be saved. For 300,000,000 Americans using two recycled rolls per week, would equal 41,600,000 trees saved in a year!

Greenpeace is behind this movement of trying to persuade all of the tissue manufacturers to use recycled paper. The problem is that the recycled tissue is not as soft. We Americans demand cushy wipes; but, can we get by with less?

As an outdoors person, I have learned to improvise during my travels away from civilization. When the paper supply was low, I have used snow, smooth rocks, soft cones, and lots of leaves. Having learned from my outdoor experiences, perhaps we could stop using paper all together. I have an idea... Instead of using paper, we could collect and store leaves to replace the paper. Of course there would be questions like how to store the leaves? And which leaves are the best? There would also have to be new laws governing unlawful leave collection. And then structural problems, would our toilets need an extra boost to dispose of the extra roughage. Perhaps the toilet bowls could be equipped with eradicators similar to those used for the kitchen sink! It would be a new green industry. We would save a zillion trees and keep the leaves out of the landfills.

Back to reality, the recycled paper is soft, when compared to a rock or leaves. We have been using recycled paper for years and our favorite now is Trader Joe’s. In Nashville, I think it is about four dollars for a twelve pack. When we first switched to the recycled paper I would long for the luxurious aloe feel, but with time I have adjusted. Of course when visiting a friend I might just have to take an extra swipe, but I’m not telling.

In other areas of the house, we employ other tricks to avoid using paper products, such as using cloth napkins and dish cloths instead of paper napkins or paper towels. We wash and reuse the cloths over and over again. The cloths’ small size has not changed the number of weekly laundry loads, we just add them to the existing loads.

There are many small things each one of us can do to live more green, and the small stuff adds up to make big differences. We should always be looking for solutions to help us become sustainable citizens of our small planet.

Happy green ways.

link - http://www.tennessean.com/article/20091215/FEATURES01/


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