Let's talk about paper towels. There is a bit of controversy around paper towels and what is best for the environment. Many people think that anything that has excess paper and is completely disposable is far from eco-friendly. When you are on a journey to make your daily life more sustainable and eco-friendly, it can feel like the only thing to do is get rid of and stop using anything that is single-use.
When it comes to paper towels, there is no doubt that they are a huge contributor to landfill waste. The fact that we have managed for so many years without the need for paper towels gives some people trying to be more conscious the drive to cut them out completely. However, being sustainable doesn't have to mean going to the extreme and compromising what works best for you at home in your circumstances. If it works for you to be completely paper towel-less then fantastic! But for those of us who are not quite ready to make that change, limiting your use of paper towels and opting for a cloth where possible, can go along way in reducing waste.
What really is the issue with paper towels? They are produced with chemicals in factories which causes pollution as well as them being continually transported to shops. There is also a claim that they kill 'virgin' trees in order to produce them. This then contributes to the depletion of resources. Bottom line is they are harmful to produce and they are difficult to recycle. But there are just some jobs where a cloth won't cut it. These are usually jobs which involve slim, grime, oils and all those kinds of icky things. Let's face it paper towels are not the worst but are far from the best. Instead let us make swaps where we can and if we have to use paper towels, to use them wisely.
If you are making a complete swap to cloths rather than paper, why not try using bamboo fabric or bamboo towels. When eventually these end up being thrown away at the end of their life, bamboo will decompose naturally and is much better than synthetic fibres.
Check out our next post to see what other sustainable swaps might suit you!