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Green Tip - Single Use Paper Towels

Do you really need paper towels?

The production of paper towels can hurt the environment by contributing to deforestation, which in turn leads to habitat loss, increased greenhouse gas emissions, and, therefore, rising global temperatures.

Additionally, paper towels are single use, which means you use them once before immediately tossing them in landfill trash. According to the U.S. EPA, paper and cardboard waste, of which paper towels are a contributing factor, make up the largest percentage of waste materials in the U.S.

Paper towels also come wrapped in plastic, which we know is bad for the environment because plastic uses fossil fuels for production and ends up as non-biodegradable waste.

The good news is that paper towels are almost always optional. Viable alternatives will still help you wipe, dry, and clean without all the negative impacts on the environment. Choose cloth rags, old kitchen towels or T-shirts, and sponges for cleaning purposes instead. You can toss these in cold water wash and re-use them hundreds of times.

If these alternatives don’t work for your situation, choose more eco-friendly paper towels, like those made from 100% recycled materials. These types of paper towels don’t contribute to devastating deforestation and often forgo dyes, fragrances, and inks that can also contribute to pollution. Recycled paper towel production also requires less energy and less water.

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