I have a quandry… should I save the trees or conserve water? A while back, I noticed that I was running a lot of dishes through my dishwasher and figured that it must be one heck of a huge waste of water. So what did I do? I started buying paper plates. No, not the plastic or styrofoam ones that come from petroleum, but the honest-to-goodness paper ones. I bought multilayered ones so they could hold food without folding.
Well, the dishwashing slowed way down. Now it takes much longer to make a load for the dishwasher and it is all drinking glasses and cups. It made me wonder… should I switch to paper cups? It was then that I wondering about my consumption of paper. Was this all just going to another landfill or incinerated and released into the atmosphere? What is an eco-friendly person to do?
Here is my theory. Both water and paper are renewable. Is one more valuable? I would think that clean water will be harder to come by in the future. So what of the waste paper? Here is the beauty part of my equation. I make sure to buy only the unpainted, uncolored, untreated paper plates and then when I am finished… they go straight into the compost pile along with all the other biodegradable stuff. That’s right… I am saving water and the paper that I am using is going back to its origins and being used to feed my plants and lawn.