Filed under: J840 Week 2, Society + Media, Waste + Recycling | Tags: bleaching, dioxins, environment, green, paper, paper towels, recycling, thekitchn.com
Green. What once was only a word to describe the color of the grass, has quickly become a revolutionary word that has garnered the worlds attention. People are working hard to educate themselves on what is and isn’t green, but the fine line between the two often gets blurred.
Paper for example, is more than recycling, or using recycled paper. A Kansas City blogger for Thekitchn.com recently wrote a blog about this very issue titled, “Why Being “Paper Towel Free” is Overrated”. In the blog she discussed the times when paper towels were the right tool for the job and when they aren’t needed. The response came in floods with people either thanking her for alleviating their guilt, or completely reprimanding her and calling her a “poser”. Most of the negative comments addressed the build-up of paper towels in landfills, or the idea of bleaching.
An article from the North Star chapter of the Sierra Club states that the bleaching of paper releases harmful chemicals called dioxins which can end up in streams and water sources and accumulate in the sediment.
While it is wonderful that many people are taking the time to educate themselves and work toward helping the environment, most people are stopping halfway through the education process. They hear that they should only use unbleached papers and begin a personal campaign to get others to do the same. But, do they know how far that unbleached paper had to be shipped from the manufacturer to their home?
How exactly is a person to be green when they don’t know where to start? With so many conflicting thoughts it can be very overwhelming. However, if a person makes an effort to educate themselves and make the right personal choices when it comes to chemicals, recycling and paper use they will be on the path to being green.
Being green won’t happen overnight but with knowledge comes innovation, and innovation is what is needed to make being green more than just recycling paper.
To learn more about the paper controversy visit The North Star chapter of the Sierra Club.
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