One of Greenpeace’s current major campaigns is to stop the destruction of Canada’s Boreal forest. Many tissue products like toilet paper, facial tissue, paper towels and napkins are produced from Boreal trees.
Although this campaign is happening in Canada, I think it’s a global issue that should receive attention from not just inside Canada, but also in other countries that use these products wastefully without considering the consequences.
One thing we can all do to help is to purchase eco-friendly alternatives to tissue products made from ancient forests. Tissue products made from 100% recycled paper already exist. These are of equal quality value, and price and can be bought at most major grocery, health food, and corner stores. Although some products may be “Greenwashed”, you can selectively purchase tissues based on this Greenpeace Shopper’s Guide to Ancient Forest Friendly Tissue Products.
Here are a few facts about tissue paper:
1. Over 700,000 tonnes of tissue products are used each year in Canada.
2. Over 7.4 millions tonnes of tissue products are used each year in the US.
3. The per capita consumption of tissue products in Canada is 22kg/year.
4. The per capita consumption of tissue products worldwide is 3.4 kg/year
5. The average Canadian uses about 100 rolls of toilet paper each year. This is equal to approximately 4.6 km of paper.
6. Canada exports 300,000 tonnes of tissue products to the US each year
7. Canada imports 240,000 tonnes of tissue products from the US each year
North American consumption of tissue products is substantially higher than the average throughout the world, so to keep our “way of life”, we should be mindful of the potential consequences of our consumption and do as much as we can to minimize the negative impact.
“Greenpeace believes that it is simply wrong that one-time use products, disposable products, are being produced out of ancient forests. The Boreal forest is literally being flushed down the toilet every day by millions of consumers across Canada. This needs to stop.”
Other related links:
Greenpeace: Tissue Products: Flushing the ancient Boreal forest down the toilet
Greenpeace Kleercut campaign
What is the Boreal forest?
Why should we care?
The threats to the Boreal forest