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The environment or my….toilet paper???

28 February, 2009

Greenpeace claims that Americans are making bad choices when it comes to toilet paper, and that we should rethink our priorities.  Greenpeace is so concerned that they have begun to rate brands by their effect on the environment, not on my tush.

Americans demand softness at a great cost to the forests of North America and Latin America.  According to a story in THE NEW YORK TIMES today,  “Americans use an average of 23.6 rolls per capita a year.”  The call is out: start using recycled toilet paper.  It may be a little rougher, but you will get used to it they say.

In fact,

Other countries are far less picky about toilet tissue. In many European nations, a rough sheet of paper is deemed sufficient….In Europe and Latin America, products with recycled content make up about on average 20 percent of the at-home market…

The battle between environmentalists and makers of toilet paper centers on deforestation, especially of old forests, “rare old-growth” trees in Canada, and “the last virgin North American forests.”  You can read their statements if you want by following the link above.

But I just have to add this:

At the Academy Awards ceremony last Sunday, the gowns were designer originals but the toilet tissue at the Kodak Theater’s restrooms was 100 percent recycled.

I’ve never had much need to emulate the “personalities” who attend the Awards, and I’m certainly not  impressed by the toilet paper there (I personally doubt that most of those women would dare displace their gowns in the bathrooms anyway; they probably didn’t eat or drink anything all day just so they could squeeze themselves into those tight revealing “originals” without having to worry about bulges.

Still, I do drive my family crazy as I go around the house picking up cans and papers for recycling, even if it means fishing them out of the trash cans in their bedrooms.  We always fill our black trash by pick-up day, but never the blue recycle one cause I like to save everything “just in case.”  I also buy recycled typing paper and envelopes, but I don’t know if I can get behind this latest movement.  Can you?


I wonder if our potus would give us a financial incentive so we could buy a bidet; I could deal with that.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. anon permalink
    28 February, 2009 21:15

    If you’re serious about a bidet, a cheaper method is a ‘neti pot’ available in funky health food stores. It looks like a teapot with a long spout. (It’s made for irrigating the nose but works fine on the other end too.)

    Living in Asia one gets used to the wonderful luxury of water cleanup instead of any kind of paper….

    • 1 March, 2009 21:15

      It seems to me that if all 6 of us in my house were to use a bidet or other similar water spout, I’d be using a lot water, soap and electricity/gas wash my towels everyday. And, no, I am not hand washing and line-drying my towels. Looks like it’s recycled toilet paper for my household. Maybe.

      • 1 March, 2009 21:15

        I never noticed much toweling necessary, and there’s always recycled paper towels.

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