Even a making a small change is worth it!
Toilet paper is an ongoing subject in my household at the moment! Aside from my experiment with not using it, usually we buy it in bulk from Costco (if you haven’t heard of it – it is a membership based shop that sells stuff in bulk) and actually it is on special offer at the moment there (last day today). It is literally half the price of the same brand in the shops. Costco isn’t local to us, but it was such a good offer, my husband got in the car and drove a nearly 120 mile round trip to buy a years supply! It wasn’t an environmentally friendly option at all, but it was definitely thrifty. It cost us £18 in petrol and £9.48 for 40 rolls – we bought a staggering 400, which should last us at least until next year when they put toilet roll on offer again.
And that would be a shame because there is a massive benefit to even making small changes. For example swapping a take away tea or coffee in a disposable cup for one in a reusable mug would mean 365 less disposable cups in landfill a year if you bought one every day for a year! According to Wikipedia ‘Over 6.5 million trees were cut to make 16 billion paper cups used by US consumers only for coffee in 2006’ (read more here). If my maths is right (using an American billion with 9 noughts) a tree can be turned into 246 paper coffee cups. So for every year one person buys a daily cup of coffee in a disposable mug 1.5 trees are chopped down. If one person did that every day for 20 years, they would be responsible for 30 trees being chopped down. If that one person changed their habits and took a reusable mug instead 30 trees would not be chopped down. If even one person saw that person make that change and decided to change too, then over the 20 years 60 trees will have not been chopped down and the two people involved would have saved themselves thousands of pounds!
It doesn’t have to be all or nothing with these things. You can compromise. Even reducing your disposable coffee cup or toilet paper usage will have a positive impact and that is what I have decided to do with toilet paper. I am going to compromise by trying to use it really sparingly and make it last as long as possible!
Making a change, even a small one, even a partial one is of benefit. Sometimes people say to me there is no point in recycling or avoiding waste, or composting because it is counteracted by something else going on in the world or something I have done that isn’t eco-friendly and I just don’t agree with that. If previously I was responsible for more trees being chopped down each year than I am now and will be in future then I think it was worth it!