Every year over 18 million metric tonnes of paper towel is used in Canada to dry peoples’ hands, and in less than one breath, it is disposed of after a single use.
According to the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), each person in North America consumes approximately 48kg of paper towel each year. Aside from the actual paper towel usage itself, the amount of resources used to produce that paper towel will blow your mind as well, as according to Environment Canada, over 324L of water is used to produce 1kg of paper alone.
That’s 3,240L of fresh water used to produce per metric tonne of paper, which equates to over 58.3 billion litres of fresh water!
There are so many things that each of us can do to help save the planet, and the simple task of consciously using less paper towel is one of them.
Next time you have to use paper towel to dry your hands, consider using only a single sheet.
Many of you reading this may think that one paper towel won’t be enough and will simply leave you with wet hands after you leave the washroom, however, according to R. P. Joe Smith, who served as a District Attorney in Umatilla County, demonstrates how easy and simple it is to dry your wet hands by using only a single piece of paper towel.
How to use one paper towel to dry your hands in 2 simple steps.
Step 1. Shake your hands 10 to 12 times to throw off excess water.
Step 2. Take one paper towel and fold it in half, drying one hand on one side, and the other hand on the other dry side of the paper towel.
Share the idea of using only one paper towel with your children, your family, your friends, and your colleagues, and together, we can help this planet by using less of its natural resources.
Watch Smith’s TEDx talk below to see how to use one paper towel.