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Environmentalists have a new foe: toilet paper

Proctor and Gamble, the consumer goods giant that owns brands such as Charmin and Bounty, is facing increasing pressure from environmentalists to start using recycled wood pulp in the manufacture of its toilet paper.

The company currently makes its toilet paper using virgin pulp, one third of which is extracted from Canada’s boreal forest. It is these trees, circling the Arctic, that environmentalist claim are key to tackling climate changes.

“It’s just unacceptable that a company like P&G is making toilet paper, a product that is used for seconds and flushed, from virgin pulp,” said Shelley Vinyard, boreal corporate campaign manager for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Her group is among 150 organisations that are lobbying for change.

P&G have said that recycled wood pulp would decrease the quality of their product however, with a spokeswoman claiming this causes people to use more tissue made directly from trees.

Comparing Canada’s forests to “the Amazon of North.”, the NRDC did insist that by changing half of Proctor & Gamble’s virgin pulp usage to recycled paper, they “would dwarf the company’s current climate commitments.”

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