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Used paper towels in compost?  RSS feed

 
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Now that we are responsible for maintaining the restrooms in our new business premises, we have a steady supply of used paper towels.
We could just send these to recycling, but I was wondering if they'd be better put to use as dry/carbon material in a hot compost?
Would you do this, or do you think there's too much of a biohazard risk (transfer of human pathogens to the soil)?
 
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I can only say what I would do, and that's absolutely use them.
As far as I'm aware, the standard human 'stuff' on a paper towel wouldn't stand a chance in hot compost!
I don't know a lot about pathogen vectors, but really the only potentially problematic thing I can think of would be faecal contamination.
Shaking the bin around and having a look first should give you a pretty good idea...
Over here, they don't recycle used paper towels, so that option's out anyway.
 
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Richard Grevers wrote:Now that we are responsible for maintaining the restrooms in our new business premises, we have a steady supply of used paper towels.
We could just send these to recycling, but I was wondering if they'd be better put to use as dry/carbon material in a hot compost?
Would you do this, or do you think there's too much of a biohazard risk (transfer of human pathogens to the soil)?



If you can use the brown paper, that would be best. It doesn't contain the dioxins that white paper would...
 
Richard Grevers
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Talking to someone over the weekend, they pointed out that paper towels wouldn't be a good idea if they contained residues of antibacterial soap, since the last thing we want to do is kill all the good bacteria in the heap. Fortunately, we also control the choice of soap in the dispensers. Now to find (or make!) a safe liquid soap that's affordable in bulk.
 
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Richard Grevers wrote:. Now to find (or make!) a safe liquid soap that's affordable in bulk.



I just make 'ordinary' soap, with extra water so it stays soft, then use a stick-blender to whizz it up with a load more water to make liquid soap as and when I need it. It's not only affordable, it's positively cheap!
 
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