Americans use 26 billion rolls of toilet paper each year. Old-growth forest destruction aside, toilet paper manufacturing plants have recently been under fire for mercury and dioxin pollution. In addition, the same chemical found in reusable water bottles and ceramic dental fillers, bisphenol A, as well as three other chemical compounds that mimic female sex hormones, are used in toilet paper production. This means TP is a significant source of estrogenic emissions to wastewater, which not only contaminates farmers' fields, but American municipalities as well.
If every US household switched one, 500-sheet roll of virgin bleached toilet paper with a roll of 100 percent recycled toilet paper, they'd be saving more than 423,000 trees. Depending on the brand of recycled TP, this switch could also be eliminating chlorine gas and emitting fewer dioxins into the environment.
To help you make the switch, here are some trusted toilet paper brands to choose from.
- Seventh Generation: Seventh Generation is the leading manufacturer of 100 percent recycled, chlorine-free-processed toilet paper and facial tissues. By purchasing Seventh Generation's soft, recycled, and hypoallergenic Bath Tissue, you're reducing the need for virgin wood pulp and leaving more trees standing. According to their site, if every US household replaced one 12-pack of 300-sheet virgin fiber bathroom tissue with Seventh Generation's recycled toilet paper, we would be saving nearly 2 million trees, 690 million gallons of water, and 4.8 million cubic feet of landfill space. Find Seventh Generation products on their webpage, online, or at your local health store.
- Marcal: Marcal's recycled, hypoallergenic, and lint-free toilet tissue is made from 100 percent premium recycled paper, is manufactured without chlorine bleaching, and is processed without dyes or fragrances. In addition, each role's inner core (or tube) is also composed of recycled paper. Marcal's website also has a calculator function that enables visitors to see how many trees they could save by using Marcal bath tissue, based on the size of their household, classroom, office, etc. How cool is that?! Use the store locator on Marcal's webpage or find their products here.
- Green Forest: According to its website, Green Forest delivers one of the highest post-consumer recycled content of any brand, with a minimum of 90 percent. The Green Forest brand is also the most economical for purchase, as it offers the greatest value for sheet size and sheet count. Like the previous brands mentioned, Green Forest paper products are also whitened without the use of chlorine, qualifying the brand as Processed Chlorine Free (PCF). Find Green Forest paper products online here
- Cascades: Cascades Enviro Premium bathroom tissue is made with 100 percent recycled fibers, produced with 80 percent less water than the industry average, dried with natural gas, bleached without chlorine, and packaged with recyclable recycled plastic. Cascades products are available at Costco, Walmart, Safeway, and other well-known US and Canadian retailers.
- Scott Naturals: To make a more gradual green step, try Scott Naturals Tissue, which is made with 40 percent recycled fiber. According to their website, the lower percentage of recycled content allows users to be eco-conscious without sacrificing quality. Scott also offers a Natural, Tube-Free bath tissue variety! Find Scott Naturals products at Walmart, K Mart, or online at Drugstore.com.